October 18, 2002

Giorgino alleges Ducheny broke finance rules

By Laura Mitchell
Imperial Valley Press

State Senate Republican candidate Michael Giorgino has filed a complaint with the Fair Political Practices Commission alleging his opponent, Democrat Denise Moreno Ducheny, violated campaign finance rules.

Giorgino’s complaint states Ducheny used campaign funds to purchase a motor home and put the title of the vehicle in her name, in violation of state government codes. He requested the commission investigate his complaint and make its findings public before the Nov. 5 election.

Ducheny’s campaign manager and husband, Al Ducheny, said the title was put in his wife’s name because the seller, La Mesa RV of San Diego, required an individual, not a campaign committee, be responsible.

La Mesa RV wouldn’t insure the vehicle unless it was put in someone’s name. The dealership was afraid a committee could disappear, Al Ducheny said.

The campaign committee, Denise Moreno Ducheny for Senate, is listed as the buyer on the sales contract.

The motor home, used as a mobile campaign office, will be donated to charity if Ducheny is not elected, Al Ducheny said. If Ducheny is elected, it will be used as a mobile district office, he said.

Denise Ducheny said the idea of the mobile campaign office was to serve constituents and the committee purchased the vehicle because it was cheaper than renting or leasing.

“We’re happy to do it the other way, if we can figure out how,” she said.

Giorgino’s complaint states the committee paid $39,114 for the 1994 motor home.

The purchase is listed as two separate items of $34,113.80 and $5,000 on Ducheny’s campaign finance reporting documents California Form 460.

The state’s Fair Political Practices Commission, Enforcement Division’s policy is not to comment to protect the integrity of the investigation, according to the division’s press office. A complete investigation can take months or sometimes years.

(Reprinted courtesy Imperial Valley Press)

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