Governor sends $4,200 excess campaign donation to state fund - Albuquerque Journal

Governor sends $4,200 excess campaign donation to state fund

In this file photo, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham addresses the crowd during her reelection campaign launch at the Albuquerque Museum. (Adolphe Pierre-Louis/Albuquerque Journal)

Copyright © 2022 Albuquerque Journal

SANTA FE – Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s reelection campaign has paid $4,200 to a state election fund after receiving a $25,000 contribution that exceeded the limit allowed by state law, according to records released by the State Ethics Commission.

State law caps contributions to governor candidates at $10,400 each for the primary and general elections, or $20,800 altogether.

The donation came from Denver-based Intrepid Potash, which operates mines in the Carlsbad area.

The Lujan Grisham campaign initially reported a $25,000 contribution from the company in October before later amending the report and noting that it had been collected in error, according to ethics documents.

The campaign sent a check of $4,200 to Intrepid Potash as a partial refund and – at the direction of the ethics commission – another $4,200 to a state election fund that offers public financing for judicial candidates, the documents say.

The Journal wasn’t able to reach a Lujan Grisham campaign spokeswoman for comment.

The excess contribution had triggered an ethics complaint, filed by Brett Kokinadis, director of the Stop MLG Political Action Committee.

The documents released by the State Ethics Commission this month do not reveal the status of the complaint.

But they do include a letter from Jeremy Farris, the commission’s executive director, seeking proof that the Lujan Grisham campaign returned $4,200 to Intrepid Potash and directing the campaign to send $4,200 to the public election fund, as required under state law for excess contributions.

Copies of the checks are included in the documents released by the commission.

“Contribution limits and disclosure requirements are critical components of state laws that ensure free and fair elections, and enforcement of these laws is one of the Commission’s core responsibilities,” the commission’s staff said in a written statement.

Lujan Grisham, a Democrat and former congresswoman, is up for reelection this fall. Republicans are set to pick a nominee in the June 7 primary.

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