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City of New Braunfels Denies Making Contributions to Comal Republicans

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City of New Braunfels Denies Making Contributions to Comal Republicans

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Comal County Republicans rally for President Donald Trump outside their New Braunfels campaign headquarters on July 4. Facebook image.

New Braunfels City Manager Robert Camareno today denied reports that the city paid $2,525 to the Comal County Republican Party.

The Federal Elections Commission on Oct. 22 reported that the city made two payments to the Republican party’s political action committee.

Camareno, who was asked about the payments today by former New Braunfels District 6 City Council Member Leah Garcia, said that information is inaccurate and blamed an accounting error by local Republican Party Treasurer Minnie Altum.

He said Altum incorrectly classified campaign expenditures for two events local Republicans hosted at the New Braunfels Civic/Convention Center as donations received from the City of New Braunfels (see graphic at the bottom of this story).

In two emails to Garcia, who served on city council from 2014-2020, Camareno said the city does not contribute to political candidates or parties.

The alleged donations were revealed on OpenSecrets.org, a watchdog group that tracks the influence of money on U.S. politics.

According to information the organization downloaded from the Federal Elections Commission on Oct. 22, the city paid Comal Republicans $2,055 on Aug. 19 and another $470 on Sept. 17.

Comal County Republican Party Chair Sue Piner said those amounts actually covered rent of the venue for two events, an Oct. 12 candidate forum and the Sept. 10 “Trey Gowdy Event.”

Garcia said she is satisfied with Camareno’s response but hopes he will have a “frank discussion” with Comal Republicans about the way the party files donations.

“Seems like an awkward mistake,” said Garcia, who describes herself as mainly a Democrat who votes both ways. “They know better and I am curious how that error was made.

“I know both Robert Camareno and the chief financial officer for the city, Jared Werner, to be very knowledgeable and thorough in all accounting practices and extremely transparent,” she said. “I hold both in high regard.”

New Braunfuls Political Contributions

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5 Comments

  1. M. Byrd October 29, 2020

    This makes no sense and needs to be investigated! They can’t just waive their hands and say “trust us” – they’ve been caught! Every penny, every in-kind donation needs to be tracked.

    Reply
  2. Bob Trautman October 28, 2020

    This needs to be investigated further. The article was rather confusing. Was payment in-kind of free rent?

    We need to know more.

    Reply
    1. Bob Trautman October 29, 2020

      The Herald investigated this as well. It is being reported that the Republican Party Treasurer listed the checks they wrote for rent to the city was actually listed as donations.

      One has to wonder how do they ever balance their books with such glaring errors…..

  3. Jim Ross October 27, 2020

    This needs to be further investigated. This article is confusing. Did the city provide free rent to the Republican Party? Did they actually make a contribution?

    We need to know more.

    Reply
  4. Roger Ailes October 27, 2020

    This article is confusing.

    1. Did city write checks for these amounts?
    2. If so, why?
    3. Republican Party listed expenditures as donations………

    More information is needed to verify actually what the hell happened here.

    If the city did make donations, then heads need to roll. This is unacceptable.

    Reply

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