Assemblyman William Boyland Jr. is currently facing a second round of federal bribery charges, but The Politicker has learned he’s also in hot water with the state Board of Elections because he hasn’t filed required financial disclosures for any of his three active campaign committees in more than a year. A spokesman for the board told us Assemblyman Boyland has already been sued by the Board of Elections multiple times and he may face another lawsuit soon.
New York law requires candidates for statewide offices to have the treasurers of their campaign committees file periodic statements with the Board of Elections documenting expenditures and contributions twice a year. Yesterday was the most recent deadline. Candidates must also file disclosures twice in the month preceding an election and once 27 days after.
Assemblyman Boyland currently has three active campaign committees. Financial disclosures have not been filed for two of the committees, the “Committee To Re-Elect William F. Boyland Jr.” and “Friends of William F. Boyland Jr.,” since January, 2009. A financial disclosure was last filed for the third committee, “William F. Boyland Jr. 2010 Re-Election Campaign,” in July, 2010.
John Conklin, a spokesman for the Board of Elections, explained to us what happens when a candidate fails to file their required financial disclosures. Mr. Conklin is currently attending the annual winter conference of the New York State Election Commissioners’ Association in Ithaca, so he responded to our questions via e-mail.
“In general, when a committee treasurer fails to make a required filing our process is to first send a letter, called the ’5-day letter,’ which, as you can guess, is sent out approximately five days after the filing deadline. It tells the committee treasurer (and the candidate) there was a filing due and we did not receive anything,” Mr. Conklin wrote. “After about 4 more weeks, if we still have not received any filing we send another letter informing them we are drafting an order to show cause and we will be suing them for ‘failure to file.’ After another 4-5 weeks, if we have still not received the filing, the OTSC is filed and we sue the committee and the treasurer for up $500 plus interest.”
If a candidate files their required disclosures at any point during this process, the Board of Elections generally stops any enforcement action related to that filing.
Because of the ECA conference, Mr. Conklin said he didn’t have access to his internal database and couldn’t give us information about how many times and how recently Assemblyman Boyland has been sued by the Board of Elections, but he confirmed there have been multiple lawsuits.
“We have sued Boyland’s committees more than once, but I can’t give you an exact figure until I am back in the office tomorrow afternoon,” Mr. Conklin wrote.
Mr. Conklin said the Board of Elections will be sending a “5-day letter” to Assemblyman Boyland next week if he still hasn’t submitted the required filings.
Though he hasn’t filed any financial disclosures for his campaign committees in more than a year, there has been some activity on Assemblyman Boyland’s committees in the past few months. Last June, Assemblyman Boyland shut down the “William F. Boyland Jr.” campaign committee. In December 2010, he closed another committee with the same name.
In November, Assemblyman Boyland was acquitted of federal bribery charges stemming from the same investigation that brought down former State Senator Carl Kruger. Assemblyman Boyland was accused of taking a no-show consulting job with MediSys Health Network that paid him about $175,000 in exchange for helping the company protect and expand its hospital facilities in Brooklyn. He did not disclose any of his MediSys income on his campaign disclosure forms. At his trial, a state official testified that she once sought out Assemblyman Boyland on the floor of the Assembly and asked whether MediSys was paying him.
“Not enough,” the Assemblyman allegedly replied.
Slightly over two weeks after he was acquitted on the first round of bribery charges, Assemblyman Boyland was arrested again after the FBI claimed he was caught on a wiretap attempting to ask undercover agents posing as real estate developers to give him $250,000 to help them with the sale of a hospital in his district. According to the FBI, Assemblyman Boyland said he needed the money to help pay his legal fees associated with the initial bribery charges.
Though he hasn’t made any financial disclosures documenting his contributions since July 2010, Assemblyman Boyland still seems to have solicited donations since then. The second FBI complaint against him alleges an informant and an undercover agent posing as a developer were invited to an October 28, 2010 fundraiser by the assemblyman. At the fundraiser, Assemblyman Boyland, who said he was in “money raising mode,” collected contributions made out to “William F. Boyland 2010.” Because of the assemblyman’s failure to file campaign finance disclosures, none of that money has been accounted for.
Assemblyman Boyland is heir to a powerful political dynasty in the Brownsville neighborhood. His seat in the Assembly was previously occupied by his father, William Boyland Sr., for more than two decades. Prior to that, his uncle, Thomas Boyland, held the seat from 1977 until 1983. Assemblyman Boyland’s sister, Tracy Boyland, is a former councilwoman.
As of this writing, Assemblyman Boyland has not responded to a request for comment on this story.