By Kathi Bliss
As early voting draws to a close, the candidates and political action committees involved in Caldwell County’s local races have prepared another set of campaign finance reports, for the period ending on Oct. 30, 2006.
At the County level, the race for the Caldwell County District Attorney’s Office continues to be the leading campaign in both fundraising and spending.
In his report dated Oct. 30, incumbent Chris Schneider reported raising $5,005 and spending just over $8,400.
Many of Schneider’s major contributors are reported as being Austin attorneys and law firms, including attorney David Sheppard, and the firms of Kuhn, Doyle & Kuhn and Orr & Olavson. Each contributed $500, as did Florida attorney Kathryn McMillen and local bail bondsman Joe Mendez. Schneider also received $1,000 from the Republican Party of Texas.
The bulk of Schneider’s spending was in advertising. All told, he reported spending $1,300 to Time Warner Cable for television commercials and $1,100 with local newspapers for advertising. In addition, he spent $1,782.95 with the United States Postal Service and $985.07 with a local printing company.
Schneider’s opponent, Democrat Reagan “Trey” Hicks reported receiving $2,185 in contributions and spending $868.53.
A contribution of $1,310 from Houston Munson paid for Hicks’ billboards and billboard vinyl, while he received another $500 from Congressman Lloyd Doggett’s “State Account.”
Hicks’ spending was almost exclusively on advertising, with $708.53 earmarked for print advertising expenses.
In the race for Caldwell County Commissioner for Precinct 2, incumbent Charles Bullock reported raising only $150 in contributions and spending $46.
Republican opponent Milton Shaw raised $1,200, including $1,000 from the Republican Party of Texas. His spending totaled $1,364.72. He purchased advertising from the Lockhart Post-Register and the Luling Newsboy for a total of $535.27, and spent $331.50 on other local advertising.
In the City of Lockhart’s special election, three political action committees are promoting their positions on two propositions, the recall of Mayor James “Jimmy” Bertram and the enactment of Municipal Civil Service Laws.
“Citizens for Public Safety Professionals,” the group supporting Proposition 2 asking for civil service laws, reported that they raised $1,300 in campaign contributions. Both the Lockhart Police Association and the Lockhart Professional Fire Fighters Association contributed $500 to get the ball rolling, and the LPA donated another $300.
According to the report, dated Oct. 30, the group has spent $1,848 promoting their cause. More than half of that total, $1,031, was paid to LasR Signs for campaign signs. The group also purchased $661.50 in local advertising and spent $156 with the United States Postal Service.
“Save our City, Keep our Mayor,” the PAC that is opposing efforts to recall Bertram reported raising $450 in contributions under $50 each, and did not report any spending.
“Coalition for Change,” the group pushing for the recall, had not filed a report for the Oct. 30 deadline period as of press time. However their last report, dated Oct. 12, shows $3,998 in campaign contributions and $2,730 in spending.
The bulk of the Coalition’s contributions came from Lockhart resident John Manning, who has given $2,478 to the cause. Dripping Springs resident Dane Braune contributed another $1,000, while web designer Michele Schalin has offered an in-kind contribution of $845 for her services.
The PAC spent $817.29 with Sign Arts in San Marcos, $1,102.80 with Ginny’s Printing. They have also purchased $810 in advertising, including a $400 payment to Time Warner Cable.
After the election, candidates and PACs will be required to file follow-up spending reports, detailing their spending up to Election Day. Watch future issues of your Lockhart Post-Register for details.