City | 9:27 pm | May 29, 2013 | By Diana Li

Nemerson reverses campaign promise

Campaign finance continues to be an issue for mayoral candidate and CEO of Connecticut Technology Council Matthew Nemerson, who came under fire when he first chose to opt out of the Democracy Fund, New Haven’s public finance system for mayoral candidates.

Nemerson originally promised in April that instead of using the Democracy Fund, he would set up a website where he would post the names and amounts of campaign donations within 48 hours of receiving them. But Nemerson told The New Haven Independent on Tuesday that he  will not implement the disclosure policy of posting donations on a website.

“I made a mistake. I was naive. The mistake is the whole nature of being in a seven-person race where everyone is raising money and there is a [campaign finance filing] date when everybody has their score announced. I just didn’t really understand the dynamic of how you have to play by those rules,” Nemerson told the Independent.

Nemerson will still have to state follow existing law and disclose contributions in monthly reports. His proposed system was both redundant and took a lot of work, he said.

Four of the seven candidates have committed to using the Fund: Nemerson, Ward 10 Alderman Justin Elicker FES ’10 SOM ’10, state Rep. Gary Holder-Winfield, Hillhouse High School Principal Kermit Carolina and plumber Sundiata Keitazulu. The other candidates — former city economic development director Henry Fernandez, Sen. Toni Harp and Nemerson — have opted out.

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