Inspector General: Pompano Mayor Rex Hardin Broke Campaign Laws Repeatedly

Below is a release from the Broward County Office of Inspector General today charging that Pompano Beach Mayor Rex Hardin allegedly steered money from his campaign to himself.

The OIG also claimed he mishandled campaign money in various other ways.

There is not much to add to the OIG’s news release, dated October 23:

OIG FINDS CAMPAIGN FINANCE MISCONDUCT BY CITY OF POMPANO BEACH MAYOR REX HARDIN FOR THE SECOND TIME IN THREE YEARS

The OIG issued a final report today finding that Pompano Beach Mayor Rex Hardin engaged in campaign finance misconduct during his November 2018 campaign for commissioner, from which he ultimately withdrew, and his campaign for mayor in the same election cycle. This was the second time in three years that the OIG concluded that Mayor Hardin violated campaign finance law.

The OIG determined that, after withdrawing from the commissioner’s race in May 2018, Mayor Hardin improperly transferred the contributions donated to that campaign to his mayoral campaign account, an option that was not legally available to him. He also failed to report any commissioner campaign activity or termination after April 2018 until he filed the commissioner termination report in November 2018, three months after his final reporting deadline.

For the mayoral campaign, Mayor Hardin used the services of his own company, Cypress Printing Center, Inc., of which he was the sole employee. The OIG found that Cypress Printing invoiced the campaign a total of $17,751.45, of which the campaign paid only $12,149.85. Mayor Hardin improperly claimed the $5,601.60 difference as in-kind contributions from himself despite the fact that he, personally, did not provide the campaign with anything of value, other than his services, to influence the results of the election. By law, any volunteered services from the candidate could not constitute an in-kind contribution. If they were in-kind contributions, they came from the company and exceeded the $1,000 maximum contribution allowed by law.

The OIG also determined that Mayor Hardin originally reported eleven of his “in-kind contributions” as loans when he did not, in fact, make such loans.

In addition, we found that, in February 2019, Mayor Hardin falsely reported in the mayoral campaign’s termination report that he had transferred $5,737.70 in surplus campaign funds to his office account; however, he did not make that transfer for another six months, which was six months past the disposal and reporting deadline. We identified other campaign finance violations, including numerous errors that Mayor Hardin addressed in amended reports he filed on the eve of his interview with our office.

The OIG is referring its findings to the Florida Election Commission (FEC) and the Broward State Attorney’s Office. The OIG’s earlier investigation of Mayor Hardin involved his 2014 commissioner re-election campaign and resulted in an FEC fine.

John W. Scott, Inspector General



5 Responses to “Inspector General: Pompano Mayor Rex Hardin Broke Campaign Laws Repeatedly”

  1. Chaz Stevens, Retired says:

    Hey Rex;

    Good news for you, career-wise!

    Apparently, former DFB commissioner Steve Gonot ia valeting cars in your town.

    Maybe you can partner up with him!

    Suck it buddy!

  2. City activist Robert Walsh says:

    See is why when I do decide to run for elected office ,although I will open campaign acc,I am not taking one dime from anyone.Just your support,not your money….

  3. Frank Strobe says:

    Wow Sobel really still is sore from 2018.
    Most of these appear to be technical violations of election code that really provided him with no real benefit. I don’t understand why he couldn’t transfer the campaign funds considering that is routinely done on other races and can clearly be done under state law.
    The only thing I can think of is he failed to file a form with his donors (again a technical violation).

    With respect to the in kind reporting issue, he clearly provided his services for less then market value and appears to be trying to show that.
    It just seems like a bunch of trumped up bs from an OIG who hasn’t had a single win in the decade he’s been in existence.

    FROM BUDDY:

    Exposing wrongdoing and wasteful, illegal spending has its own benefit.

  4. Chaz Stevens, Genius says:

    @Frank.

    My granny taught me, “be honest in the little things so you’re honest in the big things.”

    My lawyer taught me, “the first time a thief is caught stealing isn’t the first time they stole.”

    What I can teach you, “ethics matters and we need to hold truth to power, hold these in charge accountable for their deeds.”

    I’m sure that Steve Gonot only wanted to temporarily “borrow” that money from the campaign coffers.

    In the end, Rex fucked up. The good news here thought is he’s being run up the flag pole by the Broward SAO. Hopefully, Rex isn’t a young black kid with weed in his pocket.

  5. Poor Gordon says:

    Howard Fink could trash everyone and the crowd would beg for more…

    Gordon Weekes

    Gets booed at the African American Library…

    FYI Gordon, there is only one Howard and you aint even close.

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