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Florida: engineering firm made contributions in the names of others

The Miami Herald reports: It was March 15, 2002, and a top man in Atlanta for the engineering firm PBS&J had a political headache.

A friend of Gov. Roy Barnes was clamoring for a contribution to the campaign of Sen. Max Cleland, a fellow Democrat from Georgia. To make things worse, a PBS&J rival for government contracts was hosting a Cleland fundraiser.

So, James Breland, a PBS&J senior vice president, faxed a note and a donation request form to headquarters in Miami. The fax -- The Miami Herald obtained a copy from the company's former accounting manager -- relayed the promise that a contribution ``would not go unnoticed by Gov. Barnes.''

That same day, PBS&J approved a $2,000 contribution. But when the money was handed over at a luncheon later, it was in the name of not the company, but Breland.

The episode was part of a sweeping, decadeslong practice in which PBS&J used employees as ''straw'' donors to make thousands of illicit contributions to politicians across the country, according to the former accounting manager. Employees wrote the checks, and then the company reimbursed them. -- MiamiHerald.com | 10/02/2006 | PBS&J insider alleges donation scheme

Thanks to Brett Kappel for the link.

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