State Rep. Carolyn Dykema's campaign committee did not violate state campaign finance laws by accepting corporations' door prize donations for Dykema's anual picnic for area seniors this August, the Massachusetts Office of Campaign and Political Finance says.
The state agency ruled after investigating a complaint alleging the Dykema Committee "received corporate contributions from local incorporated businesses when those businesses donated gift certificates and merchandise to be distributed" during that event for seniors in Dykema's district, state campaign finance office Director Michael J. Sullivan told Dykema in a Nov. 20 letter.
The Dykema campaign distributed the letter to the media Sunday night.
The Massachusetts Republican Party filed the complaint, the campaign said in a press release.
"I'm glad this issue has been resolved," Dykema said in the statement.
"In its finding, OCPF has confirmed what residents of this district have always known: the senior picnic is about our community and our seniors and not about campaign politics. I'm pleased that next year's picnic can go on as planned and I'm looking forward to continuing to recognize our seniors for all they contribute to our towns."
Sullivan said Dykema’s staff contacted local businesses seeking door prizes for the picnic. There were 13 businesses donating $500 total in gift certificates and merchandise, he said; “no raffle tickets were sold, and no mpney was raised for the Committee as a result of prizes being distributed at the picnic,” he said.
Sullivan said his office believes “the prizes were donated to benefit the seniors, not to support Representative Dykema’s campaign, and that many of the donors have donated similar prizes in the past, regardless of who was hosting the event.”
“The office has reached this conclusion in part because the senior picnic was not a fundraising event, and no money was raised for Representative Dykema’s campaign at the event or a result of the event,” Sullivan wrote.
Dykema (D-Holliston) was re-elected Eighth Middlesex District representative on Nov. 6, when she defeated Republican Marty Lamb (R-Holliston).
The district includes Holliston, Hopkinton, Westborough Precinct 2, Medway Precinct 1, and Southborough Precincts 2 and 3.