Conservative group scrutinized over payouts to board member's companies
CPAC 2021 stage.

(Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly claimed Charlie Gerow had "reaped millions" from the American Conservative Union. Raw Story regrets the error.)

The Daily Beast's William Bredderman is scrutinizing top figures with the American Conservative Union -- the group behind the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) -- after their companies received payments from the non-profit group.

The report focuses on ACU vice chairman Charlie Gerow and ACU secretary Kimberly Bellissimo.

As Bredderman wrote, "The ACU, best known as the group behind the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, has enriched companies belonging to two of its directors to the tune of $4 million in the past five years," adding, "This cash has poured out of the ACU's own coffers, out of its political committees, and straight from the pockets of the right-wing rank and file into firms controlled by Vice Chairman Charlie Gerow—now a candidate for governor of Pennsylvania—and Kimberly Bellissimo, secretary of the ACU's foundation."

As an example, the report notes that in the past two years, the ACU has paid out $153,315 to Quantum Communication in Pennsylvania, which lists Gerow as its CEO.

According to one attorney, the ACU failed to disclose that information, answering "no" when asked "a series of questions on its federal 990 form about whether it had hired any company in which one of its directors held a position or interest."

According to Marcus Owens, an attorney who formerly directed the IRS's charities division, that could constitute perjury.

"It certainly sounds like that's the sort of relationship that should trigger disclosure in at least one place in the return," he explained. "If they answered that question incorrectly, and they are doing business with firms in which the officers, directors, and key employees have an ownership interest or are themselves officers and directors of those other firms, it's difficult to say that isn't material."

But the organization said that it was an error that has since been corrected.

The report also notes that Bellissimo has been the recipient of money from the non-profit conservative group.

"The group's federal committees have also dumped money into Bellissimo's firms: $116,756.25 to her company ForthRight Strategy for graphic design and printing, and $516,418.16 to Direct Support Services—a company registered in Bellissimo's name and based out of ForthRight's offices—mostly for "database management," Bredderman reported.

You can read more here.