Law | Politics

Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation pays $9K fine for campaign donations






The Yocha Dehe Golf Club. Photo from Facebook

The Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation has agreed to pay a $9,000 fine to the California Fair Political Practices Commission.

The tribe donated $3,000 to state Sen. Ronald S. Calderon (D), well within the legal limits. But by providing golf games at a fundraiser that were worth more than $10,000, the tribe went over the contribution cap.

"In sum, the two contributions from [the tribe] to the Calderon Committee totaled $9,325," a stipulation from the FPPC stated. "The contribution limit for 2009 – 2010 was $3,900 per election. So for the 2010 Primary and General elections combined, the maximum cumulative contribution [the tribe] could legally make to the Calderon Committee was $7,800."

The tribe's settlement will be considered at the FPPC's meeting on August 21, according to the agenda.

Calderon could face additional enforcement action from the FPPC, The Los Angeles Times reported. He's already been indicted on federal bribery charges.

The FPPC was at the center of a closely-watched sovereignty case involving the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. The tribe argued that it didn't have to report campaign contributions to the agency.

As part of a settlement, the tribe agreed to abide by the state's finance laws instead of taking the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Get the Story:
American Indian tribe fined for violations involving Sen. Calderon (The Los Angeles Times 8/12)
Adam Gray, Debra Gravert agree to FPPC fines (The Sacramento Bee 8/11)