A Framingham Company Just Got Caught Funneling Funds to Marty Walsh

The Walsh campaign was unaware and has donated the $15,500 to charity.

Reliable Roofing and Sheet Metal of Framingham, and its owner James O’Donovan, have been caught by the state’s Office of Campaign and Political Finance (OCPF) in a contribution-funneling scheme to contribute money to Marty Walsh’s campaign for mayor. The company paid $45,000 to the state to settle the claim, OCPF announced today.

According to OCPF, Reliable employees and their relatives contributed $15,500 to Walsh at a dual event at The Stockyard last April, for O’Donovan’s birthday and to raise money for Walsh. The company gave those employees money for those contributions, according to OCPF, disguising their real source.

The Walsh campaign was unaware of the scheme, and has contributed the money to charity.

The company has considerable reason to care who runs the city. Most of Reliable’s work comes from government projects, including Boston-contracted work on City Hall, housing developments, and schools. In 2012, the company did the construction for an $8 million renovation to Mattahunt Elementary School in Dorchester.

In 2009, a Reliable worker was killed in an accident while inspecting the roof of a Suffolk University dorm in Downtown Crossing.

OCPF has the option to refer cases like this to the Attorney General’s office for possible prosecution, but usually prefers to negotiate a settlement. In addition to the $45,000 payment, Reliable has agreed not to make independent expenditures, make contributions to independent expenditure PACs, or permit solicitation of contributions on its premises through the end of 2016.