ATLANTA - Our FOX 5 I-Team continues its close examination of the Atlanta mayor's race.
Our I-Team studied Mayoral hopeful Kwanza Hall's city council campaign disclosures and found a confusing mess, with 24 amendments filed to correct mistakes made every year for the past six years.
All of those amendments were filed just last week.
We started with January 2014. Hall, who had just been re-elected to his District 2 City Council post, filed a campaign disclosure that shows $24,605 on hand. Then, his next report filed in June of 2014, the money was gone. There was no explanation of how it was spent. The next campaign report in January 2015, the money was back again. Then June 2015, it’s gone again.
We shared our findings with good government watchdog, William Perry.
“I think the way you report your campaign reports is reflective of how you serve in office,” says Perry. “If you are not careful with how you disclose your own money, how are you going to be careful with the people's money.”
Kwanza Hall insists there is no missing money and it was all cleaned up when he filed his latest amendment on May 9 of this year.
"No, it’s there, says Hall. “We've accounted for all transactions, all contributions that came in and all expenditures.”
Another report that caught our eye was June 2016. His City council campaign disclosure showed he had $16,025 on hand. Hall filed an amendment in April of this year that showed a new number: $642,063.
Hall says his staff made a mistake. The rules say to start over with a new election cycle. Instead, his staff added up all the contributions he'd raised since 2006 which made it look like his campaign had lots of money.
“Could have been a little tighter little tighter,” says Hall, “We've identified a new team, to review and address everything. We are working on it.”
But at least one other government watchdog is not impressed.
“As a citizen off the street, looking at something like this it would appear as if the money came out of the sky,” says Sara Henderson of good government group Common Cause.
“If a candidate or sitting elected official can't do these forms, that really are pretty simple, and file on time, file an accurate report, it says something about your fiscal integrity,” says Henderson.
When we saw that $642,063 campaign report, we asked Kwanza Hall to sit down and explain it to us. Two weeks later he met us in Midtown. The two days right before we met, he had filed a total of 24 amendments to his city council campaign reports correcting mistakes in every single year going back to 2011.
The amendments show completely different numbers for contributions and expenditures. Some amendments were even amended. Kwanza Hall insists, he's got a new team, and now he's got it right. Is he bothered that for years his disclosures on file were inaccurate?
"It doesn't bother me. I know the great work I do, I know in my heart, the character I have, and how committed I am and how much I love this city,” says the mayoral hopeful.
Hall filed two campaign disclosures for his Mayoral race. He’s already amended them a total of three times.