As we reported in Saturday's editions, there are continuing questions about campaign transactions of state Sen. Fletcher Hartsell Jr.
"There was conflicting information this week about one of those payments – $800 from the campaign to his property company in 2011.
"The payment was reported in a campaign disclosure by Hartsell as being a charitable donation on behalf of the nonprofit Cabarrus Community Health Center, which has an office on McGill Avenue in Concord. At the same time, Hartsell’s campaign paid his property company another $1,600 and said it was on behalf of a multicultural community group.
"Campaigns are allowed in North Carolina to give to charities, though typically such donations are made directly to the charity.
"(Hartsell attorney Roger) Knight said the $1,600 payment was to cover utility bills for the multicultural group, which is a tenant in a church building owned by Hartsell’s company.
"He said Hartsell’s company had also handled landscaping for the community health center, which is across a lane from the church. Knight said the $800 from the Hartsell campaign to his Equity Properties was for 'three or four months' of landscaping and clipping of bushes at the health center.
"The health center’s CEO, Cappie Stanley, said in an interview that no money changes hands between the health center and Hartsell related to landscaping.
"Stanley said Hartsell helps with part of the landscaping at the center but that he already receives 'in exchange for his assistance' storage space on the health center’s property."
In a follow-up interview, Knight said that Hartsell had a place for storage of a Studebaker on the health center property but that he was not aware of any arrangement of landscaping for the storage.
That may shed light on another transaction.
The campaign paid an insurance company $999 in Jan. 2011, according to records. The listed reason for that payment was for a storage facility -- but it was characterized as being for the benefit of the nonprofit multicultural group. Its CEO has said that Hartsell helps the group out at times but otherwise declined comment.
The state Board of Elections is reviewing all transactions dating to 2008.
Readers can review campaign finance documents at the state Board of Elections Web site. Here is a link to the Hartsell campaign.
Also attached to this post are several source documents related to articles in regard to Hartsell over the past month, including the trust case under review.