ASUC Elections Council denies campaign finance reports

Sakura Cannestra/Staff

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Four campaign finance reports were denied at the annual ASUC Elections Council Campaign Finance Committee meeting Wednesday.

Two parties — Defend Affirmative Action Party/Fighting for Immigrant Rights and Equality, or DAAP/FIRE, and Transfer Coalition — and two independent candidates, Gabriel Alfaro and Senator-elect Aasim Yahya, had their reports denied, according to the meeting’s minutes. The issues ranged from clerical errors, including unreported revenue sources, to discrepancies between campaign expenditures and revenues reported.

“Finance reports are commonly denied because mistakes were made within the reports,” said ASUC Elections Prosecutor Ryan Ham in an email. “Ramifications are yet uncertain, as the prosecution office needs to look more closely towards this matter and see exactly which violation was committed, but rest assured it will not have major impacts with this election.”

The denial of Yahya’s finance report was a clerical error on the ASUC’s part, according to Jedidiah Tsang, ASUC chief legal officer. The ASUC will be reconvening to rectify the error.

Alfaro said the denial of his financial report appeared to be due to a clerical error. The minutes stated that his report was denied because the summary sheet revenue had been left blank and a form had not been submitted.

The DAAP/FIRE and Transfer Coalition finance reports were denied because of clerical errors and because both parties reported expenditures that exceeded their campaign revenue, according to the meeting’s minutes. DAAP/FIRE did not report any candidate expenses and Transfer Coalition did not indicate revenue sources for a number of items.

Transfer Coalition chair Alexander Alpi said it was difficult to continue fundraising after the coronavirus pandemic. He added that as a new party, they had some expenses that other parties did not, such as making a logo and banners.

The money came out of Alpi’s pocket, along with two other members, with the intention of it being repaid with later fundraising, according to Alpi.

“We were aware of these violations possibly leading to a denial, but given the circumstances surrounding COVID-19, it became near impossible to fix,” Alpi said in an email.

Contact Taylor Rudman at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @TaylorRudman.