An independent expenditure (IE) group that is supporting Mike Dunleavy for governor, Families for Alaska’s Future, seems to not care about Alaska’s campaign disclosure laws. The group was formed on June 25, 2018. It is chaired by Steve Strait, its treasurer is Paula Harrison. The group is currently running ads on TV stations in Anchorage and Fairbanks. The Anchorage Daily News reported the group’s media buys on August 24, the same day the ad they are running appeared on YouTube.
The Alaska Public Offices Commission (APOC) requires any expenditures from IEs to be reported within ten days of the expenditure being made. According to the ADN article, the group did a media buy for $400,000 and the ad started running on August 24. Click here to see the ad. Because yesterday was Labor Day, the report for that expenditure would be due today. But that would just be for the media buy, there is also the production of the video. Video ads just don’t appear out of nowhere. Someone had to produce it, which would require a disclosure within 10 days of that expenditure.
It is likely that PS Strategies had something to do with the making of the ad. The owner, MaryAnn Pruitt, is listed as a deputy treasurer for the group and is also the group’s spokesperson. Another IE, Families of the Last Frontier, recently spent over $34,000 with PS Strategies supporting George Rauscher and Richard Walker. That group is also chaired by Steve Strait and its treasurer is also Paula Harrison. So they know how to do APOC filings.
According to the ad, the top contributor is the Republican Governors Association, followed by Arctic E&P Advisors (owned by Randy Ruedrich) and ABC Alaska. We don’t know how much each of them contributed because the group has yet to file a single disclosure. It is unknown if APOC will be looking into this or if anyone will file a complaint. But it is known that the group has been entrusted with a lot of money from some serious people. You would think they could at least follow simple disclosure laws.