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Campaign Coffers: What’s UTLA Going to Do With Its Money?

Samantha Oltman | February 1, 2013

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According to new documents unearthed by LA School Report (but not otherwise available online), the political action arm of United Teachers Los Angeles, called UTLA-PACE, has amassed a war chest of $671,000 and begun spending funds on polling and consulting.

However, UTLA-PACE has yet to deem any of its campaign spending as “independent expenditures,” which must be disclosed and posted online within 24 hours if they exceed $1,000, according to the Los Angeles City Ethics Commission.

UTLA-PACE launched a new website with a page that specifically advocates the defeat of contested School Board President Monica Garcia.

But, according to the Ethics Commission, the UTLA site isn’t officially considered a “communication” under the disclosure law.

Spending that doesn’t meet the definition or exceed the cumulative $1,000 mark in IE spending escapes the 24-hour online disclosures required by the LA City Ethics Commission website.

So the money PACE spent to build and maintain it isn’t held to the same 24 hour IE disclosure rules as a political mailer or phone call would be — and apparently neither has anything else that UTLA-PACE has done thus far.

You can see the most current UTLA-PACE contributions form here (PDF).

Previous posts: Update: Outside Money Pouring In, Election ’13: Undisclosed Donors?, Reform Coalition Reports $1.2 Million Raised

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