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Hawaiian Gardens Mayor Rodriguez, Vice Mayor Barry Bruce Guilty of Violating California Election Law 

By: Randy Economy and Justin Cooley

A political campaign committee responsible for the 2013 reelection wins of Hawaiian Gardens Mayor Reynaldo Rodriguez and Vice Mayor Barry Bruce has been fined a total of $2,500 by the California Fair Political Practices Commission for failing to report a late campaign contribution from a powerful casino gaming business.

Hews Media Group-Community Newspapers confirmed with Gary Winuk, the Chief of Enforcement with the FPPC on Thursday about the action taken against the two local elected officials. Also cited in the ruling was Delia Olivas, who served as the Treasurer of the campaign account that was called “Re-Elect Council Members Rodriguez and Bruce 2013.”

State officials said that Rodriguez and Bruce received two checks totaling $6,000 to their candidate-controlled committee back on September 30, 2013 from the Hawaiian Gardens Casino. One check was $5,000 and the other check was $1,000.

Winuk in his ruling said that Rodriguez, Bruce and Olivas failed to report any of the financial contributions to city clerk Susan Underwood within 24 hours of receiving the sizable contributions. In total, Rodriguez and Bruce raised a total of $8,100 into their joint campaign account.

“Respondents Re-Elect Council Members Rodriguez and Bruce 2013, Reynaldo Rodriguez, Barry Bruce, and Delia Olivas failed to timely report two late contributions received to the Hawaiian Gardens City Clerk within 24 hours of receiving each, in violation of state law,” the ruling stated.

Winuk stated in his ruling that “Failing to timely report receiving a late contribution is a serious violation of the Act as it deprives the public of important information about (Rodriguez and Bruce’s) Respondent Committee’s financial activities.”

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