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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Eyman Case Referred To Wash. AG For Possible Civil, Criminal Action

Austin Jenkins
Northwest News Network
Sherry Bockwinkel, who brought a campaign finance case against anti-tax activist Tim Eyman, listens as Washington's Public Disclosure Commission votes to refer its findings to the state Attorney General.

Washington anti-tax activist Tim Eyman could face civil or even criminal sanctions for alleged campaign finance violations.

The state’s Public Disclosure Commission voted unanimously Thursday morning to send the case to the state Attorney General.

This case against Eyman alleges he received secret kickbacks from a signature-gathering firm called Citizen Solutions and then used some of that money for personal expenses. The commission found evidence Eyman intentionally ignored campaign finance law and said his explanations “strain credibility.”

Activist Sherry Bockwinkel brought the original complaint in 2012.

“When you deceive people when you’re collecting money and use it for your own personal gain, for your own compensation without telling people, I think his donors should know that,” Bockwinkel said.

Eyman’s attorney called Bockwinkel a “disgruntled former vendor” and said he believes Eyman will ultimately “prevail.”

Even as the PDC heard the Eyman case he was sending out emails asking for contributions for his latest anti-tax measure on the November ballot.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."