LUBBOCK, TX -- City Council District 3 candidate Maurice Stanley admits he put himself in a position to potentially violate campaign ethics laws. The admission comes a week after Stanley made fundraising a major issue in the campaign.
Last week Stanley said, “Though special interests checks come with lots of zeros, they will inevitably come at the cost of addressing the highest priority of central Lubbock property owners.”
Stanley did not mention either of his two opponents by name in making the statement.
Then on Sunday Stanley was trying to fix a problem with his own fundraising. Specifically he admitted to the acceptance of anonymous donations which is not illegal per-se. But anonymous donations make it impossible to know if any one donor reaches the $50 threshold for mandatory campaign contribution reporting.
Customers of his barber shop were able to drop money into a bucket labeled “Maurice’s Common Sense Fund.”
In a written statement Stanley said, “Questions have suddenly been raised about this method, specifically the ethical compliance of not recording the identity of cash contributors who gave less than $50. I understand these concerns, and I look forward thoroughly addressing the situation on Monday.”
Stanley said he would hold a news conference Monday morning. One possibility is that he can donate the money to a non-profit charity which would then remove the risk of an ethics violation.
Stanley defended himself in the written statement by saying he wanted a campaign in which common folks could become involved.
“So, I set out a bucket in my shop in which private unsolicited contributors could make $1, $5 or $20 donations, whatever they saw fit to give,” Stanley said. “Folks responded by dropping a total of $2,740 into my bucket.”