WASHINGTON Every voter in the 23rd Congressional District knew in 2009 that William L. Owens was spending plenty of money on advertising in the weeks leading up to the special election to replace Rep. John M. McHugh. Now its clear he spent even more than the public knew.
Mr. Owenss campaign committee has been busy correcting its filings with the Federal Election Commission from that hectic period, and the biggest change is in the money he spent on advertising from July 1 to Oct. 14 prior to the election tens of thousands of dollars more than he initially reported.
The campaign attributed the mistakes to its compliance director, who has since been replaced. Mr. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, beat Douglas L. Hoffman and Dierdre K. Scozzafava, who had withdrawn, to secure the seat.
The campaigns treasurer, Theodore Kowalczyk, told the FEC in a letter this week that an internal review revealed duplicate entries and some expenses reported in the wrong period. In some cases, inaccurate amounts were reported, he said.
He also wrote to the FEC in July regarding amended reports, saying the initial filings misreported advertising expenses.
Among the payments not initially reported in the filing were three payments totaling $134,958 to Murphy Putnam Media of Alexandria, Va.
A spokesman for Mr. Owens, Sean Magers, said the campaign undertook an audit after spotting some errors, and that the amended filings attracted the attention of the FEC, which wrote to the campaign asking why the changes were being made.
In his most recent letter to the FEC, Mr. Kowalczyk wrote, The review revealed that a number of transactions were reported with incorrect dates. When the dates for these transactions were corrected some transactions were shifted into a different reporting period, thus changing the totals on a number of reports. In addition, some transactions had duplicate entries, some transactions were missing from the original reports and a few transactions were reported with inaccurate amounts.
In a letter in January, Mr. Kowalczyk referenced errors on a different FEC filing, telling the commission that some contributions that exceeded limits should have been attributed to the spouses of those whose names were on the initial filing.