* I told you a couple of weeks ago that mayoral candidate Willie Wilson’s charity hadn’t filed its required annual state report. A Wilson spokesperson said at the time that the form would be filed within the week. That didn’t happen.
Willie Wilson campaign press release…
ATTORNEY GENERAL SEEKS TO INVESTIGATE
DR. WILLIE WILSON FOUNDATION BY DEMANDING DETAILED AUDIT
At the request of Rahm Emanuel, Four Alderman
looking for Class 4 Felony Charges against Wilson for helping the needy
WHO: Humanitarian Dr. Willie Wilson and The Willie Wilson Foundation
WHAT: Responding to the recent audit handed down by Attorney General Lisa Madigan that calls for the examination of foundation files and records for donation disbursements and for giving away his own money for property tax relief last week. This coming as the result of four aldermen generating a politically motivated City Council Resolution R2018-834 (attached). On Rahm’s behalf, the four aldermen are pursuing the Class 4 Felony charges.
“What we’re doing is asking for more information,” said Maura Possley, the attorney general’s office spokeswoman. “We’re not investigating anything at this point.”
Possley said Wilson’s controversial cash giveaways prompted questions, which led to the discovery that Wilson’s foundation had not filed a necessary financial form, required by the state for charitable organizations operating in Illinois, for 2017. It was not immediately clear how long the documents had been outstanding.
At a South Side church event in late July, Wilson handed out more than $200,000 in cash and checks. Gov. Bruce Rauner was at the event and later criticized the giveaway, but the state election boards said Wilson apparently did not violate any election laws. Last week, Wilson handed out more than $100,000 to Cook County residents to help pay their property taxes.
* And the man running Wilson’s campaign wants him to hold off for a while…
“I don’t think of it as an audit. But they need to be fully compliant with our process. We have some questions. If he is giving money from his foundation, that is a perfectly legal thing to do. We just have to make sure everything is accounted for,” Possley said. […]
“I’m going to support Dr. Wilson all the way, but we need to hold up on the giving because of the audit,” said Ricky Hendon, a former Illinois legislator turned political consultant. […]
Wilson met with the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform (ICPR) on Monday and defended his philanthropy.
The watchdog group had filed a complaint against Wilson with the state elections board, arguing that Wilson should have reported the $200,000 giveaway as an “in-kind” contribution.
After the meeting, Hendon suggested the ICPR didn’t have a problem with what Wilson did as long as the money came from the foundation and Wilson’s “personal pockets”—and not his campaign funds.
A State Board of Elections hearing next week instigated by ICPR will be held as planned, however.