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Oklahoma lobbyists agree to pay $115K ethics settlement

January 6, 2021 GMT

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Two Oklahoma lobbyists have agreed to pay $115,000 in penalties as part of a settlement announced Tuesday by the Oklahoma Ethics Commission.

The settlements by the commission were reached with lobbyists James Milner and James McSpadden, who both served as treasurers of the Oklahoman’s for Healthy Living political action committee. According to the settlement agreements, the PAC accepted and distributed illegal corporate contributions and failed to disclose those contributions as required by law.

Under the agreements, Milner agreed to pay $65,000 and McSpadden $50,000 to the state’s general fund.

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McSpadden said in a statement he accepts responsibility for making “unintentional errors.”

“I was asked to allow my name to be used as treasurer of a PAC without fully understanding what was expected of me,” he said. “Significant errors were made that I now understand.”

An attorney for Milner, Jonathan Buxton, described the agreement as a “painful, but acceptable, end to his cooperation with the investigation.”

Under the agreements, Milner agreed to never again serve as an officer of a PAC while McSpadden is prohibited from doing so for 10 years.