S.C. governor candidate didn’t report consulting income

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Republican gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley was paid $40,500 — 20 percent of the family’s income — by engineering firm Wilbur Smith Associates for consulting work the Lexington County state lawmaker performed in 2007 and 2008, according to Haley’s tax records released Monday.

Haley was paid an additional $2,000 by the firm in 2009, according to tax records she released last week.

Haley, who faces U.S. Rep. Gresham Barrett in a runoff today, has pushed to require lawmakers to report their income. She has previously claimed that she voluntarily disclosed all her income and was unaware the Wilbur Smith payments had not been disclosed on her state economic interest forms.

Barrett voluntarily released his 2009 returns June 9, and turned over 2008 and 2007 returns last week after learning of the Wilbur Smith income. Members of Congress are required to file a detailed disclosure of all income and assets yearly.

“That Representative Haley failed to disclose $40,500 in income from a company with numerous state government contracts is deeply troubling,” said Barrett campaign manager Luke Byars. “Rather than being transparent with voters, she withheld that information until only hours before the polls open to avoid public scrutiny.”

Haley has said she was not required to report the income under state law, and state Ethics Commission officials agreed because Haley is not directly employed by the company. In addition, the South Carolina State Ethics Commission said that while Wilbur Smith has state contracts, it has no contracts with the South Carolina House.

Members of the South Carolina House Ethics committee said she may be required to report the income if she was hired because of her legislative position, but executives with Wilbur Smith said that was not the case.

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