APOC Complaint Against Rep. Bill Thomas Campaign (R-Haines)–The response(s).
…Upon further research, it was impossible to determine exactly what category of legal contributions these ads were attempting to fit, if any:James Studley was the one who coordinated the entire ad buy. He provided the photos, drafted the copy, designed the ads and worked with Ms. Evandon on the buy, but directed Chilkat Valley News to bill each business listed on the ads for payment.
…because Mr. Studley was one of Thomas’s Deputy Treasurers and he coordinated the entire advertising buy, this did not appear to qualify as an “Independent Expenditure” because AS Sec. 15.13.135. and regulation 2 AAC 50.270 states that Independent Expenditures cannot be coordinated with members of the campaign.This wasn’t the only “coordination with the campaign” regarding these ads. Per the complaint:At least three high-ranking members of Representative Bill Thomas, Jr’s re-election campaign staff sit on their Executive Boards of some of the businesses purchasing these ads:– Haines Real Estate (2 ads): Owned by Alaska Resources Consulting, Inc — James Studley, Deputy Treasurer for the Thomas Campaign, is President of Alaska Resources.– Alaska Resources Consulting, Inc.(2 ads): James Studley, Deputy Treasurer for the Thomas Campaign, is President.– Oleruds Inc. (1 ad): Doug Olerud is the Chairperson & Deputy Treasurer of the Thomas Campaign and he is President of Olerud’s, Inc.– King’s Store Inc.: Gregg Richmond, Deputy Treasurer for the Thomas Campaign, is on the King’s Store Board of Directors as a Secretary/Treasurer.