Society of Professional Journalists Honors FPPC With Prestigious Open Government Award

Contact: Jay Wierenga, (916) 322-7761

.pdf version of news release

Sacramento - The Northern California Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has announced that it will give the James Madison award to the FPPC as a "Champion of Open Government and the First Amendment," in recognition of FPPC's success in compelling donor disclosure from the Arizona non-profit corporation Americans for Responsible Leadership that made an anonymous $11 million donation to a California campaign committee.

"We are honored that our effort to shine a light on anonymous contributions is being recognized," said Ann Ravel, Chair of the FPPC. "This award demonstrates that the public cares deeply about transparency and knows that the FPPC will do what is necessary to ensure that people get the information they need when it counts - before an election."

This past November, ARL admitted to campaign money laundering after it was compelled by the California Supreme Court to disclose its donors in compliance with California's Political Reform Act. The $11 million contribution by ARL was the largest anonymous contribution ever disclosed as campaign money laundering in California history.

"Our work on the ARL case was an important step in fulfilling the purposes of the FPPC, to provide disclosure in the political process", said Ravel. "However, our work is not done. We continue to be dedicated to providing meaningful disclosure to give citizens a basis for the faith and trust which must lie at the heart of our political process."

The FPPC will receive the award at the Northern California Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists annual James Madison Awards banquet on Tuesday, March 12 in San Francisco.

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