Mayor Warren responds to campaign finance issues

Local News

Mayor Lovely Warren says she will be refunding the controversial money transferred from her political action committee (PAC) to her campaign committee.

Warren told the media the issues regarding her campaign finances are “fake issues.” She says the opponents are creating problems to go after her during the campaign season. 

But she says in order to essentially put this to bed, she says she will refund the money in question — $21,000. Warren says who exactly that money will be refunded to is all on a list her opponent James Shepard has.

The issue her opponents have brought up regarding the money is New York State law forbids PACs from coordinating with campaign committees.

Warren’s campaign claims the money was originally meant for the Friends of Lovely Warren campaign, but was accidentally placed in the PAC account through a PayPal error.

“My team and I truly believe we do not need to return this money, that we are within the legal rights in obeying the campaign finance law, but because this is an issue that has been raised over and over again I’ll return it based on his list on who I need to return it to,” said Warren.

Warren’s opponent Rachel Barnhart responded to the mayor’s press conference in her own press conference.

“Fixing the problem doesn’t make it go away, fixing the problem doesn’t mean you didn’t break the law,” said Barnhart. “If they were over the limit donations she has to refund the money — that’s the law.” 

Shepard will also be meeting with media Friday evening. 

The State Board of Elections declined to comment when News 8 asked them if Mayor Warren has been in contact with them to straighten this out and if she’s under investigation. 

News 8 will provide more information as it becomes available.

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