Woodstock resident files complaint against McHenry County recorder, Republican Party

Resident contends recorder did not disclose contribution

A complaint has been filed with the Illinois State Board of Elections against McHenry County Recorder Joe Tirio and the McHenry County Republican Central Committee, alleging the parties did not properly disclose payments that funded Tirio’s attorney in a court case aiming to uncover the identities behind the mysterious political attack group known as the Illinois Integrity Fund.

On July 25, Woodstock resident Ronald Eck filed two complaints with the elections board. One of those complaints targets Tirio for “failure to disclose an in-kind contribution” and “failure to file an A-1 for the in-kind contribution,” complaint documents show.

The complaint claims Tirio’s campaign committee did not disclose a $1,200 contribution from the McHenry County Republican Party to pay the fees of attorney Phil Prossnitz. A $1,200 payment to Prossnitz was reported on the committee’s latest D-2 filing, according to campaign finance records logged on the Illinois State Board of Elections website.

The beneficiary of the transaction, the filing reads, is the McHenry County Republican Central Committee.

Eck disputed that, saying the payment “was NOT for the benefit of the Republican Central Committee of McHenry County ... the payment was for the benefit of Joe Tirio,” the complaint said.

Tirio’s campaign committee should have reported those dollars, Eck said, as an “in-kind contribution.” 

Tirio declined to comment.

In a separate complaint filed against the McHenry County Republican Central Committee, Eck alleges that the party failed to disclose “an expenditure in excess of $150” on behalf of a candidate on its quarterly financing report. 

Eck pointed to the $1,200 payment to Prossnitz to represent Tirio.

“The funds expended by the committee were not intended as a benefit to the committee and were in fact expended to the benefit of candidate Joe Tirio,” the complaint reads.

Republican Party Chairwoman Diane Evertsen could not be reached for comment.

The State Board of Elections has summoned both Tirio and the county GOP to a hearing Aug. 27 to discuss the complaint at the James R. Thompson Center in Chicago.

Anyone who willfully files false or incomplete information about campaign financing, contributions and expenditures could face a fine of up to $5,000.

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