Michigan Mayor Defends Using Campaign Money to Pay for part of Daughter’s Wedding
Photo by Gary Meulemans via Unsplash
LeRoy Burcroff, mayor of Romulus, Michigan, is defending his use of $4,500 in campaign funds to pay for part of his daughter’s wedding, claiming that the celebration was a campaign event.
Through his lawyer, Burcroff said the money from his campaign was used to fund the open bar at his daughter’s wedding, which was held at a local yacht club. His attorney, Danial Wholihan, cited that the action did not count as a legal violation since the campaign team has repaid the expenses. Wholihan added that the celebration was a campaign event since the campaign team attended.
Some campaign finance experts did not find such an argument compelling. “If the wedding of your own daughter could be a campaign event, what sort of event cannot be a campaign function?” asked Simon D. Schuster, the Executive Director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network.
Earlier this year, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson launched an investigation into a complaint filed against Burcroff on the account of questionable spending. ABC News affiliate WXYZ discovered numerous transactions made by the mayor using campaign funds. This included more than $6,000 worth of payments made to Burcroff’s family for office rent and campaign office maintenance.
Additionally, there was a recurring $3,800 membership fee at the yacht club at which his daughter’s wedding was held as well as donations amounting to roughly $15,000 to his local church.
Burcroff announced earlier this year that he will not be seeking reelection and has reportedly given back $20,000 to his campaign fund for such expenses mentioned above. Additionally, Burcroff is still under investigation by the secretary of state.