Records show at least $5 mil in corporate cash funded DNC - | WBTV Charlotte

Records show at least $5 mil in corporate cash funded DNC

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - For months leading up to the Democratic National Convention, local host committee leaders boasted of the first convention in history to put on the event without using corporate donations to fund it.

"We've always said for official convention activities, we're not accepting cash from corporations, and that continues to be true," Charlotte in 2012 CEO Dan Murrey said that in May before the convention.

The committee filed it's reports on Wednesday with the Federal Election Commission detailing each dollar spent and given to the fund. Murrey's May claims weren't exactly true.

The financial statements show at least 5 million dollars in corporate money paid for renting the Uptown Arena.

Faced with a Presidential ban on corporate donations, the local host committee set up a separate DNC fund, New American City, for which the ban didn't apply.

Back then, they said this fund wouldn't pay for official convention activities. Now, these filings show otherwise.

"It was an exception that was contained in the contract," said Mayor Anthony Foxx. Thursday, Foxx initially said he would not provide any other comment than an e-mailed statement that touted the success of the DNC, but did not answer questions about promises of no corporate cash.

We caught up with the Mayor at a separate function on Thursday and asked him the questions in person. He repeatedly referred to the arena license agreement, a 36 page contract that does include one line about arena payments being allowed to come from the New American City Fund.

When asked why the public was repeatedly told no corporate money would be used to fund official convention activities, Foxx again referred to the contract.

We also reached out to Charlotte in 2012 CEO Dan Murrey, but representatives said he was out of the country for a few weeks. Murrey did respond to an e-mail asking why he told the public the corporate funds wouldn't be used. Below is the exchange between reporter Kristen Hampton and Murrey:

Why were corporate dollars used to fund convention specific events, when the public was told over and over my multiple officials, they would not be?

(Murrey) Convention and community events and activities were paid for in accordance with legal requirements, self-imposed rules and within the terms of the Master Contract, which was made public in March of 2011.

--Murrey did not respond to repeated e-mails asking why the public was told the donations wouldn't be used.

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