The Woodlands, June 14 – The Texas Ethics Commission assessed a $500 civil penalty against former Woodlands Township Board member Mike Bass for violating several provisions of Texas election law. Long time Republican Precinct Chairman Jim Doyle filed the complaint against Bass.
Doyle filed the complaint against Bass during the summer of 2016. Bass was defeated for re-election to the Township Board in the November 2016 general election.
After Doyle filed the complaint, Bass told a local blog on August 31, 2016, “My complaint is still awaiting a decision by the commission,” he said. “But I believe response clearly shows any errors were unintentional and not material.”
The Ethics Commission found:
- Bass had issues with six (6) reports he had filed in July 2013, January 2014, July 2014, 30 days prior to the November 2014 general election, 8 days prior to the November 2014 general election, and January 2015. Bass corrected the reports after the complaint filing.
- Bass failed to disclose his campaign treasurer’s address.
- Bass failed to disclose certain political contributions and expenditures as well as the address information of two payees.
- The complaint had alleged that Bass accepted a corporate contribution, but, in his response, Bass contended that the treasurer of the corporation had provided Bass with the contribution, and showed a check to verify that fact.
- Bass failed to disclose original political expenditures from personal funds.
- Bass told the Commission in his filings that he maintained $0 of political contributions when he had, in fact, maintained $823.36., $1,373.38, $2,008,83, $4,713.46, $4,889.46, and $502.38 at the time of filing the reports.
- Bass violated Sections 254.036(a), 254.061(2), 254.031(a)(1), 254.031(a)(3), and 254.031(a)(8) of the Election Code.
Bass agreed to the civil penalty but did not admit or deny the facts and the liability. He did, however, agree to comply with the foregoing Election Code provisions in the future.
Bass told The Golden Hammer, “No surprise to me that someone would pick this up for media/political use. I have no comment. I have no interest in continuing with any political role, other than to cast my vote and continuing to find ways to serve my community. Serving in any kind of political role or capacity in the future is not on my radar.”
Doyle commented, “Bass had broken the regulations, the campaign regulations, and he got fined. That’s what you get when you do that.”