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Ask the Expert: Campaign finance reports


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo.  – Now that the quarterly chore of Missouri Ethics Commission reports is completed until July 15, we sat down with the owner of one of the only professional firms in the state that specializes in assisting legislators with their Missouri Ethics Commission reporting requirements, Cherie Snyder with Watermark Accountability Services, to ask her some ethics report questions and what you should look for in selecting a political accounting firm.

Cherie Snyder
Cherie Snyder

What is the best piece of advice to someone who is just starting to have to fill out ethics reports?

Copy everything and keep all of your receipts.

What is the worst mistake candidates make with their reports?

Taking cash. Credit cards and checks are typically okay, but taking cash can be a problem.

What are the most common mistakes candidates make on ethics forms?

Not receiving their contributor’s employers and occupation.

What kind of relationship do you have with the Missouri Ethics Commission?

I talk with them regularly and take all of their online classes.

What is the most important thing in selecting someone to assist them in their ethics commission forms?

Working with people who are reputable and do not skirt any laws.

Cherie Snyder has ran a political accounting firm since 2009 and has over 20 years in financial management. She works with clients all the way from the local level to statewide candidates. A few of her clients include HRCC, Commissioner Luann Ridgeway, former Senator Jason Crowell, and Rep. Shelly Keeney.

“I have known Cherie and used her services for several years,” Keeney said. “I can always expect accurate, precise accounting and MEC reports filed on a timely basis. I recommend Watermark Accountability to all of my colleagues.”

Editor’s Note: Cherie Snyder does accounting for Missouri Political Bug, a company that operates alongside of The Missouri Times.