Local candidates report on campaign spending
By LPR Staff
As the first day of early voting approaches and the 2008 election season draws to a close, candidates in the four contested local races have revealed their campaign spending and fundraising reports.
Under state law, candidates are required to file spending reports 30 days prior to the election, with another report due t
he week before the election. While most candidates complied with last week’s filing deadline, those that did file reported low levels of spending thus far.
In arguably Caldwell County’s highest-profile race, Republican challenger Jimmy Parker hopes to oust incumbent Democrat Daniel Law in November. To that end, Parker reported having raised more and spent more campaign funds than any other candidate on the local ballot.
Parker’s reports reflect he has raised $3,150 in campaign contributions. $1,000 of that was donated by James Godwin of Harwood, while the Caldwell County Republican Women contributed $450 and Dwayne Kaufman of Lockhart gave another $300. Smaller contributions, including $200 in less-than-$50 increments, came from a variety of other sources.
Of those funds, Parker reported having spent $2,293.53 on his campaign so far. The bulk of that expense, $1,222.65, was paid to Hardeman Signs for campaign signs. Parker spent $285 on other local advertising, and $244.67 on fuel.
Law showed both lower spending and lower levels of fundraising. All told, his Oct. 7 report showed $750 in fundraising, including a $500 contribution from Robert J. Kuhn of Austin. Of the $996.78 Law reported spending on the campaign, $841.22 purchased campaign materials from Printing Solutions, of Lockhart.
In the other county-wide race, incumbent Tax Assessor-Collector Mary Vicky Gonzales reported $264.67 in un-itemized campaign fundraising. Funds are not required to be itemized if they are donated or spent in increments of less than $50. Gonzales’ opponent, Joyce Cayton, had not filed a 30-day report at press time. However, if a candidate has not yet spent more than $500 on the campaign, reporting is not required.
Of the four men vying for seats on the Caldwell County Commissioners’ Court, Democrat hopeful Richard Mendez, who is challenging incumbent Tom Bonn for the Precinct One seat, is the financial leader. Mendez has raised $1,810, mostly through small contributions, with only one reported contribution, $400, coming from Robert Mendez of Lockhart.
Of those funds, Mendez has spent $1,592.26. His major expenditures include $523.08 to Just off the Square Printing for campaign materials and $965.05 to Printing Solutions for signs and raffle tickets.
Bonn, on the other hand reported having raised $500 through two large contributors, the Caldwell County Republican Women, who offered $300, and Peggy Duda, who contributed another $200. Of those funds, Bonn has spent $300 on signs.
Finally, in the Precinct Three race, Republican challenger Sergio Gamez has raised and spent more than his incumbent opponent Neto Madrigal.
Gamez showed fundraising of $1340, with large contributions coming from Dorothy Jo Hardwick of Martindale ($500), the Caldwell County Republican Women ($300) and Duda, who again donated $200 to the campaign.
Gamez reported spending $1860.61, $1,213.53 to Hardeman Signs and another $184.03 to Minuteman Press.
Madrigal reported having raised $500, and spent $83.12 in un-itemized expenses.
The candidates’ seven-day spending reports will be included in the Oct. 30, 2008, edition of the Lockhart Post-Register. For information on the candidate”s positions on the issues, pick up this week”s print edition of the Lockhart Post-Register.