The Oregon Elections Division says signature gatherers must stop selling chocolate on Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard.  

WW broke the news Tuesday that a Portland resident filed an Oct. 20 complaint with the state about Portlanders for Water Reform's ballot-initiative campaign.

Brighton West, deputy director of Friends of Trees, said a signature gatherer was falsely claiming the initiative to wrest control of Portland utilities from City Hall would stop the city from selling its water supply to Nestle Corp.

The state said it would send the campaign a warning.

WW has obtained that warning email, sent to co-petitioners Kent Craford and Floy Jones on Oct. 21. Its basic message: Knock it off, or we'll investigate your campaign.

Here's the full text.

To Whom it May Concern: My name is Jennifer Hertel; I am a Compliance Specialist with the Secretary of State's office, State Elections Division. We received an email from a person that was approached on Friday night on SE Hawthorne by a circulator of the water reform petition. The sender of the email stated that the petition circulator told them "to sign a petition to stop Nestle from privatizing Portland's water supply." The circulator also stated that "his boss told them to talk about Nestle." It is imperative that the chief petitioner(s) of the petition realize that ORS 260.555 prohibits a person from "knowingly" making false statements regarding the contents, meaning or effect of the petition to any person who signs it. If the chief petitioner(s) have hired a signature gathering company to collect signatures it is important that this information is shared with the contractor. If our office receives a signed complaint with sufficient evidence to support that a violation of ORS 260.555 has occurred, we will conduct an investigation into this matter. That being said, we are using this opportunity to communicate our concerns and hope that you will ensure that any person or organization involved with the circulation of the petition is aware of this law. We appreciate your attention to this matter. Sincerely,  Jennifer HertelCompliance SpecialistElections DivisionSecretary of State's Office