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Corn growers fined for political contribution violations

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP)--The Minnesota Corn Growers Association has been fined $8,000 for acting as a political action committee without registering with the Federal Election Commission.

The FEC said the nonprofit trade association also failed to disclose its connection with the Minnesota Corn Growers PAC, failed to file fundraising and expenditure reports from 2000 through 2007, and gave excessive contributions to some candidates.

Under a conciliation agreement reached with the FEC, the trade association said it reported all of its contributions to the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board. But it acknowledged it made no filings to the FEC, even though 76 percent of the $83,680 it raised between 2004 and 2007 went to federal candidates.

FEC records dated March 11 say the association paid an $8,000 civil penalty.

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