Investigations take bite of Perdue campaign warchest

Posted January 31, 2011 7:43 p.m. EST

— Campaign finance investigations have been costly to Gov. Beverly Perdue's campaign, according to a filing made public Monday.

Perdue's campaign committee spent more than $140,000 in the last six months of 2010 to pay the law firm that defended the campaign in a State Board of Elections investigation into unreported campaign flights aboard donors' planes during the 2004 and 2008 elections. The campaign also forked over $30,000 to the elections board to pay a fine imposed in August for the unreported flights.

State and federal investigators are still looking into the unreported flights to determine if any criminal charges are warranted.

Perdue's campaign also forfeited $84,000 in illegal contributions last year from two donors – Wilmington businessman Rusty Carter and former state Sen. Fred Hobbs – who used their employees to make donations to get around state limits on campaign contributions.

The campaign reported $406,073 in cash on hand at the end of 2010 for a possible re-election bid, according to the campaign finance filing. That compares with the $2.5 million she had in the bank at the end of 2006 as she geared up for her gubernatorial campaign.