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State lawmaker faces questions about campaign fund


A state lawmaker could be in trouble for failing to explain thousands of dollars in expenditures by his campaign committee.

The Detroit Free Press reports that state Sen. Jim Marleau, R-Lake Orion, used his campaign fund to pay $114,000 on his personal credit card. Filings by his campaign committee often did not provide details on what the cards were used for.

Fred Woodhams is with the Michigan Bureau of Elections, which oversees campaign finance reporting. He says the bureau is trying to get Marleau to make his reports current and complete.

“They also need to itemize all their expenditures – what they’re spending the money on, and there are rules on what committees can spend money on," Woodhams said. "So the disclosure ensures the committees are complying with all relevant state laws.”

It’s illegal to use campaign funds for strictly personal expenses. Marleau is in his second term in the Michigan Senate. 

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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