Candidates who’ve run for office owe a total of more than $2 million in fines to the state Board of Elections for past-due campaign reports. The board collected about $43,000 in fines last year.
Former South Kingstown State Senator Patrick McDonald owes the most – nearly $214,000 -- in the Board of Election’s newly posted list of outstanding fines. The outlook for collecting that money is considered bleak as McDonald is currently serving prison time for embezzlement.
Another state senator who ran afoul of the law, John Celona of North Providence, is the number 2 scofflaw, with more than $175,000 in outstanding fines. The president of the Providence City Council, Luis Aponte, owes about $48,000 in fines.
Board finance head Richard Thornton says the board lacks power to enforce the collection of fines, although taking offenders to court has sometimes proven more effective.
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