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November 29, 2006

Border group's finances scrutinized

By SUSAN CARROLL, Nov. 25, 2006, Houston Chronicle;

"2005 BUDGET
• Revenues: $418,493
• Expenditures: $449,667
Program services: $280,920, or 62.47%
Management: $23,348, or 5.19%
Fundraising: $145,399, or 32.34%
• Deficit: $31,174

Source: Minuteman Civil Defense Corps
For the first time, the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps has revealed a smattering of intriguing details on its finances, but some former Texas members say they're still not sure how the group has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in contributors' money.
Chris Simcox, founder of the nonprofit border watch group, posted IRS forms and an audit on his Internet site Nov. 15 in response to media reports raising concerns about how the organization was handling its contributions.
The new documents offer a glimpse into the group's finances, former Minuteman loyalists say, but leave unanswered questions. Among them: How is the group spending thousands of dollars in membership fees they've collected in the past 19 months? And what companies or other nonprofits received $277,000 — amounting to more than half the group's contributions in 2005 — for unspecified "personnel services?"
Already, questions about the group's finances and other concerns have prompted some leaders to quit. Bill Parmley, the former head of the Texas chapter of MCDC, was one of the first leaders to leave in July 2005.
"There were just too many irregularities," Parmley said in an interview. "I just didn't want to be involved in something like that."
Simcox and his spokeswoman, Connie Hair, did not respond to repeated phone calls or messages...".

Chronicle reporters Terri Langford and Chase Davis contributed to this report.

susan.carroll@chron.com

at; http://www.chron.com

Posted by VisaLawyer at November 29, 2006 07:17 AM

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