OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — An industry group that contributed heavily to defeat a measure that would have required labeling genetically engineered foods says it reported its activity to state watchdogs and hopes to resolve a lawsuit alleging it violated Washington’s campaign finance laws.
The state attorney general amended a complaint against the Grocery Manufacturers Association, saying it concealed millions more dollars in campaign contributions than has previously been reported. Attorney General Bob Ferguson increased from $7.2 million to $10.6 million the amount Ferguson says the organization collected from members to oppose Initiative 522 without following the rules.
Brian Kennedy, a spokesman for GMA, says the group registered as a political committee and provided “full transparency” for its contributions. In a statement, Kennedy said the group hopes to have the lawsuit resolved quickly.
Ferguson says the group formed a political committee only after he sued.