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Suffolk Republicans to audit party finances, sources say 

Incoming Suffolk County Republican chairman Jesse Garcia, seen

Incoming Suffolk County Republican chairman Jesse Garcia, seen in 2015. Credit: Daniel Goodrich

The Suffolk Republican Committee is about to conduct an audit of party finances, according to several high level party sources.

Ex-party chairman John Jay LaValle left his post March 18 with less than $800 left in party coffers.

Brookhaven GOP chairman Jesse Garcia, who is slated to become Suffolk GOP leader next month, said an audit is “a normal course of action” when a new leader takes over, and he had one conducted when he took over the Brookhaven GOP organization.

In its Jan. 15 campaign finance report, the Suffolk GOP reported $13,687 in its campaign and housekeeping accounts. The last report of the party’s Chairman's Club in November showed $2,007. But the GOP held a $250-a-head fundraiser in February that brought in about $25,000.

LaValle said “there’s no need for an audit,” and his plan all along was to pay party bills and leave the GOP debt-free. LaValle also said that over the years, he at times voluntarily went without pay when the party was short of funds, but he never tried to collect. He said his last paycheck was short by two days.

Suffolk County Democrats in their latest report showed $208,764 on hand as of March 11. Officials said the party at its county dinner last week in Holbrook raised another $400,000 from an estimated 500 donors.

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