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City Fines Councilman for Post-Election Fundraising

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Aired 4/19/09

San Diego's Ethics Commission has fined City Councilman Tony Young $10,000 for continuing to collect money 18 months after his special election in 2005. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.

Stacey Fulhorst, of the City Ethics Commission, says the fine could have been larger, but the commission took into account the fact that Young's special election was called on relatively short notice after his predecessor, Charles Lewis, died.

Fulhorst says the commission believes it's important to enforce the laws that elected officials stop fundraising to pay off campaign debts three months after an election.

Fulhorst : People who tend to give contributions for a candidate far after an election are typically people who have business pending before the city.

Nearly half of the money Young raised in his election bid came from developers or construction companies. He continued fundraising after the election in order to pay off promised bonuses to his campaign staff.

The Ethics Commission was founded nearly six years ago by former Mayor Dick Murphy, and has stepped up its enforcement activity in recent years. Alison St John, KPBS news.

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