AG Probes Campaign Contributions Involving Philadelphia Union Money

By Tony Romeo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Pennsylvania attorney general’s office confirms it is investigating a campaign contribution to a race in Berks County that involved money from a Philadelphia union — some of which allegedly ended up going to two Philadelphia city council candidates.

A spokesman for the attorney general confirms there is an investigation, but won’t elaborate. It comes after a Berks County Board of Elections probe of a donation made to the Friends of Vaughn Spencer, or FVS, days before Spencer was elected Mayor of Reading in 2011.

That check for $30,000 came from IBEW Local 98. On the same day the union money was received by FVS, FVS in turn issued checks for $10,000 each to Philadelphia City Council candidates Bill Green and Bill Ruben.

The Board of Elections report notes that Local 98 had already maxed out its contributions to Rubin and was near its legal limit with donations to Green. The board concluded there was a “reasonable inference” that Local 98’s contribution to FVS was made in order to illegally funnel more money to the council candidates.

A spokesman for Local 98 said he had no comment on the attorney general’s investigation.

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