Campaign spending hearing against state Rep. Kaniela Ing postponed
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Campaign spending hearing against state Rep. Kaniela Ing postponed

  • JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Rep. Kaniela Ing in his office, in Jan. 2017, at the State Capitol in Honolulu. The state Campaign Spending Commission this morning postponed hearing a complaint against state Rep. Kaniela Ing until next month.

The state Campaign Spending Commission this morning postponed hearing a complaint against state Rep. Kaniela Ing until next month.

Ing, who is running for a seat in Congress, is accused of a wide range of offenses including filing 23 false spending reports, using campaign funds for personal use, co-mingling personal and election accounts, filing late reports and exceeding campaign spending limits going back three election cycles.

In brief remarks this morning, Ing told the commissioners, “I take full responsibility for any mistakes that were made by myself (and) my state House staff over the years.”

He pledged to “fully cooperate” with the commission.

In response to a request by Ing, (D, South Maui), to postpone the hearing, Campaign Election Commissioners voted to hear the complaints against him at its June 20 meeting.

But Ing, who appeared with accountant Ryan Akamine, said he and representatives of the “Friends of Kaniela Ing” political action committee have scheduling conflicts in June.

Akamine asked that the complaints be heard at the commission’s July meeting. That meeting is scheduled for July 18 but likely will be held on July 25, according to the commission’s executive director, Kristin Izumi-Nitao.

After the meeting, Akamine said Ing’s attorney may have to request that the commissioners postpone their June hearing on Ing’s complaint until July.

Ing could face criminal prosecution if the Campaign Spending Commission decides that he knowingly or recklessly violated campaign finance laws, and then chooses to refer the case to either the state attorney general or the city prosecutor.

But the Campaign Spending Commission staff is recommending that Ing be fined $15,422, that he reimburse $2,344.55 to his campaign account and that his campaign pay $2,000 to the Hawaii Election Campaign Fund.

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