Woodrow Boggs Jr., whose activities as a political adviser to D.C. City Council member Charlene Drew Jarvis (D-Ward 4) are under scrutiny by federal authorities, has issued a statement denying that he ever used his connection with Jarvis for his financial gain.
Boggs said he "never received compensation of any kind to influence Mrs. Jarvis" or the council committee she heads. "In fact, on only one occasion have I ever lobbied any council member, and on that occasion I was properly registered as a lobbyist," Boggs said.
Also, Boggs said that neither he nor anyone representing Jarvis misrepresented her campaign finances to the D.C. Office of Campaign Finance, as the office charged in a complaint filed before the city's Board of Elections and Ethics last week.
A longtime friend and social companion of Jarvis, Boggs defended his activities as her political adviser and the manager of her last two campaigns in a statement released over the weekend by his attorney.
His handling of campaign finances and his business dealings with groups that have lobbied the City Council have become the source of increasing controversy in recent weeks.
The U.S. attorney's office began an investigation into whether Boggs improperly benefited from Jarvis' position after disclosures indicated that Citicorp, a New York-based banking giant that lobbied Jarvis' council committee on banking legislation, paid Boggs $28,200 for consulting services.
Also, a real estate industry group hired Boggs for $5,000 to analyze rent control legislation five days after Jarvis took the lead in pushing the legislation through the council.
At the request of the campaign finance office, D.C. police have begun an investigation into whether alleged campaign finance violations during Jarvis' 1984 reelection campaign constitute criminal violations.
The office is recommending civil fines and criminal prosecution against Jarvis, Boggs and three former campaign treasurers for a total of 18 alleged infractions. Vance said last week he also would seek civil fines and criminal prosecution in connection with Jarvis' unsuccessful 1982 mayoral campaign, which Boggs managed.
In his statement, Boggs said he was particularly concerned with "misleading reports that I spent approximately $172,000 of campaign funds improperly and without the authority to do so" during Jarvis' 1984 campaign. Boggs said, "I was specifically authorized by Mrs. Jarvis to make payments" and was listed as an "authorized signatory" when the campaign opened a bank account.
"Unfortunately, there was an oversight in that we did not list my name on the forms filed with the Office of Campaign Finance as such an authorized signatory," Boggs said.
The complaint before the Board of Elections and Ethics charges that Boggs was "not authorized to make withdrawals or payments from the depository account," though it mentions that Jarvis submitted an affidavit saying that she authorized Boggs to make payments.
Boggs also said that contrary to statements by Keith Vance, who directs the campaign finance office, he and other campaign officials have cooperated fully with the office's auditors.
Boggs said he had spent "many hours of time and substantial effort" working on legislative issues "even though I received virtually no compensation for the services rendered, because I wanted to do something that would make a meaningful contribution to the city."