Sunday, May 4, 2014 – 11:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, May 4, 2014 – 01:00 p.m.
Information, or the lack thereof, may haunt one of the republican candidates running in the hotly-contested 31st Congressional District.
Paul Chabot (R-Rancho Cucamonga), has spent years building his resume with one goal in mind. That goal being to run for political office.
Until recently, Chabot’s main endeavor involved operating a series of anti-drug non-profit businesses underneath the entity Freestyle Foundation, Inc. Some of the groups operate under the names Drug Free RC and Coalition for a Drug Free California.
Records searches have raised several questions related to the finances and work being done by Chabot and his wife Brenda, who are the principles behind the operations. Researching such records is usually straightforward. But in Chabot’s case, it’s kind of like pieces of a puzzle.
A search of several non-profit and tax-exempt databases for Form 990 Tax Returns comes up with limited financial information. The only tax return located that was filed by Freestyle Foundation, Inc., and signed by Executive Director Brenda Chabot, is from tax year 2007, and filed in 2008.
To view the only return located, click the following link: Freestyle Foundation Inc – Form 990-2007
A search of the San Bernardino County Fictitious Name Database shows no Dba’s registered to anyone with the last name of Chabot. Database searches included the websites, ProPublica.com, Guidestar.org, National Center for Charitable Statistics, California Secretary of State and the California Attorney General.
Searches had to be conducted under “Freestyle Foundation”, “The Freestyle Foundation”, “Free Style Foundation”, “Drug Free RC”, “Drug-Free RC” in order to locate data.
“The Freestyle Foundation, Inc.” is registered with the Internal Revenue Service, California Secretary of State and California Attorney General. The entity is “Active” with the Secretary of State and “Current” with the California Attorney General.
In Attorney General filings, Freestyle reported no gross revenue in 2008, only $3,500 in 2009, $3,350 in 2010, $8,450 in 2011, and $14,500 in 2012.
Information also indictaes that Freestyle may have have been seriously delinquent in it’s state non-profit filings., according to online records, with Attorney General’s Office. Those records show Freestyle filed it’s non-profit reports for 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, on January 3, 2013.
The question here is were this many reports filed this late? If so, then why?
This could explain the lack of online tax returns being readily available. Starting with filings made in 2012, the IRS began digitizing all Form 990 Tax-Exempt records. But it would appear the returns may have been filed years later.
On another front, the online websites would appear to raise more questions, than they answer. The site for Drug Free RC is essentially a skeleton template that makes reference to a “Networking Lunch”, with a date that is to be determined (“TBD”) in the future. The website for Coalition for a Drug Free California, while somewhat more elaborate, lists programs that “we intend to” or “will promote”, or other programs, which already exist elsewhere.
Leading to another question here. What do the non-profits currently do?
Another Chabot entity, with a completely different focus, Stars and Stripes United, Inc., was created in 2009, as a 501(c)4 not-for-profit. According to the Attorney General, the non-profit filings for this business, for the years 2010, 2011 and 2012, were also all filed on January 3, 2013.
The corporation is “Active” according to the Secretary of State, and “Current” with the Attorney General.
Gross revenue, reported to the Attorney General, for Stars and Stripes United, Inc., was $0 in 2010, $400 in 2011 and $250 in 2012.
A call to the contact number during normal business hours, listed on the charity websites, was met with an automated answering service.
Mysteriously, any reference to Chabot’s, purportedly elaborate, non-profit anti-drug activity has been omitted from his biography on his campaign website related to his current run for the 31st Congressional District.
Also of interest, is an Inland Valley Daily Bulletin story published October 4, 2013, revealing that Drug Free RC, through Freestyle Foundation, Inc., was awarded a five-year $625,000 federal grant by the Office of National Control Policy.
To read the story, click here.
Lastly, Chabot has also entered the consulting business, creating Chabot Strategies, LLC. The company website says it specializes in a hodge-podge of activites and services.