David Dodd 2:33 a.m., May 19
Craig Candelore, who was part of a failed conservative charge against San Diego's judicial establishment two years ago, has been sent a "warning letter" by the California Fair Political Practices Commission regarding the results of a state enforcement audit of his campaign committee.
"The audit found the following; (1) adequate records were not maintained for expenditures; (2) one semi-annual campaign statement was filed late; (3) late contribution reports were not filed for two contributions received, and (4) some payments were made directly from the candidate's personal funds," according to the August 16 letter, posted online by the agency.
The notice, signed by FPPC enforcement chief Gary S. Winuk, says that the audit, conducted by the Franchise Tax Board, found violations of the state's political reform act, then adds, "The dollar amounts involved, however, are relatively small and we have decided to close this case with a warning letter."
"The information in this matter will be retained and may be considered should an enforcement action become necessary based on newly discovered information or future conduct. Failure to comply with the provisions of the Act in the future will result in monetary penalties of up to $5,000 for each violation."
Recipients of such letters may contest their findings by requesting that the allegations be heard before the full commission.
Candelore and three other candidates were part of a slate supported by Chula Vista-based "Better Courts Now," backed by foes of same-sex marriage and abortion rights, in a June 2010 attempt to take on judicial incumbents.
Superior Court Judge Lantz Lewis beat off Candelore's challenge.
After the election, Candelore complained that the San Diego County Bar Association's candidate ranking system was "like a Star Chamber."
“We lost, but I thought it was a pretty good showing; 35 percent [36.1 percent in the final tally] is nothing to sneeze about.”