- Associated Press - Monday, March 7, 2016

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - The oil company Phillips 66 is agreeing to pay $16,000 to California’s campaign finance watchdog after secretly paying for 17,000 mailers in 2012.

An agreement released Monday shows attorneys for the Fair Political Practices Commission found Phillips 66 avoided disclosing its role by passing payments between two organizations.

The $41,000 was eventually used to send campaign mailers to Rialto residents opposing a local tax increase on oil companies.

Voters rejected the measure.

Phillips 66 told the state it believed its payments were legal, but attorneys for the agency decided it misled voters and warranted a penalty.

The consulting firm that ordered the flyers was also working for Assemblywoman Cheryl Brown, a San Bernardino Democrat.

Commissioners will consider approving the settlement on March 17.

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This story corrects the date of the commission meeting.

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