OCE Referral Regarding Rep. Don Young
On October 13, 2011, the Office of Congressional Ethics transmitted a referral to the Committee on Ethics of the United States House of Representatives regarding Representative Don Young.
Nature of Review
Representative Don Young may have accepted contributions to his legal expense fund in excess of the limitations of $5,000 per calendar year from any individual or organization. The Congressman Don Young Legal Expense Trust's disclosure report for the first quarter 2011, filed by Representative Young with the Committee on Ethics on April 20, 2011, lists twelve $5,000 contributions from twelve affiliated entities that may have been directed by a single individual.
If the twelve contributions came from a single source, the contributions may have exceeded the annual $5,000 per organization or individual contribution limit provided for in House rules and Committee on Ethics regulations governing legal expense funds.
The Board of the Office of Congressional Ethics recommended that the Committee on Ethics further review the above allegations.
On December 20, 2011, the Committee on Ethics released a report indicating that it had dismissed the above allegations, but simultaneously adopted revised regulations regarding legal expense funds, which, among other changes, clarified that contributions by certain entities could be attributed to the owners of those entities.