Big piece by Ryan Lillis in the Bee today on Mayor Kevin Johnson’s network of nonprofits. I’m starting to think there might be a story here.
One of the big revelations in Ryan’s story is the new investigation by the Fair Political Practices Commission into the mayor’s non-profit the Sacramento Public Policy Foundation.
It seems that one of the mayor’s non-profits, Think Big, didn’t disclose several sizable donations from the Sacramento Kings until several months after they were legally required to do so.
The mayor’s former chief of staff and now Think Big boss Kunal Merchant told the Bee the late reporting was due to a “clerical error.”
Those donations all were made in the summer of 2011 and total $357,500. But they were not reported to the City Clerk until August 23 of this year.
That’s one week after my story in SN&R came out–raising several concerns about the transparency and accountability of the mayor’s groups. Up until that point, Think Big has only reported $22,423 in donations from the Kings. With the “clerical error” money added in, the total is much more significant, $379,923.
I spoke with Johnson’s attorney, Fred Hiestand, last week about the lack of transparency for these groups. As I reported in my column in SN&R this week (out tomorrow), he told me, “There are a lot of nosy people, the KJ haters, who have nothing better to do than to ask for more than the law requires” about the non-profits.
I wonder if those big donations from the Kings would have ever been reported–at all–if nosy people had not started asking questions. I’ve asked it before, I’ll ask again, isn’t there a pattern here?
Once again I’ve uploaded the most recent behested payments filings, if anyone wants to investigate further.