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The committee, Sanders '05, began raising and spending money for this year's race without filing a disclosure form - an act that Sanders and committee members did not realize was a violation at the time, the councilman said June 3. He said he would comply with any decisions the Board of Elections issued. "After a full and frank meeting with the NYC Board of Elections, the Sanders '05 committee received information on how to regain compliance with election rules," a statement from the committee said. "A time line was established and work has begun by the committee to meet it."Specifics about the June 6 meeting, such as what information was received, the nature of the time line or whether Sanders will be reprimanded were unclear, however, since repeated attempts to reach both the councilman and Board of Elections officials were unsuccessful. Jerome Glover was listed as the contact on the committee's statement but when reached, he refused to comment.The statement also said that a second meeting with the city Campaign Finance Board will be scheduled soon "to resolve any election issues." Board spokeswoman Tanya Domi said she was unaware of any meeting planned but that the board would attend one with Sanders if asked.According to campaign finance rules passed by the City Council in December, all candidates must file disclosure forms even if they choose not to participate in the matching funds program, which Sanders opted out of. Sanders did not submit the forms to the Campaign Finance Board until June 2, more than two weeks after the May 16 deadline. A board spokeswoman said the councilman would still have been in compliance if his re-election committee had not already raised and spent campaign funds.It has not yet been decided whether Sanders will be punished, which would probably come in the form of a $500 fine for such a violation, the spokeswoman said.This is not the first time Sanders has run across problems with the Board of Elections. Before his first successful race for the 31st Council District seat in 2001, the Laurelton councilman handed over all fund-raising responsibilities to his campaign committee at the time, called Friends of Sanders. According to a Board of Elections spokesman, the committee has not sent in the proper disclosure forms since 2002, which has resulted in its taking the committee's listed treasurer, Patrick White Jr., to court four times and fining him $545. Sanders has so far not been directly linked to the committee since washing his hands of it four years ago.Reach reporter Zach Patberg by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 155.
©2005 Community Newspaper Group
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