California fines groups $16 million for funneling money to campaigns - 2013-10-25
SACRAMENTO — California officials are imposing a record $16 million in penalties on secretive political groups that funneled money into initiative campaigns in 2012, ending a yearlong investigation that showed gaps in state disclosure laws.
Two campaign committees in California are being ordered to pay a total of $15 million to the state, a sum equivalent to the donations they received, which regulators said were improperly reported. Two Arizona nonprofits, one linked to billionaire Republican donors Charles and David Koch, will pay a combined $1-million fine as part of a settlement.
The nonprofits are not being required to reveal their donors' identities, even though disclosure was at the root of the investigation. Under existing campaign finance laws, the state cannot force the groups to release the names, officials said.