Minden Press-Herald

Oct 01st

It takes funds to run

VoteReported campaign finances of the Webster Parish Sheriff candidates show an enormous disparity in both received contributions and paid expenditures.

Differences in the District 10 State Representative election finances are also large, but pale in comparison to the sheriff's race.

According to the Louisiana Board of Ethics, candidates for office in Louisiana are required by law to report all campaign-related contributions and expenditures.

All candidates reported contributions and expenditures 30 days prior to the primary election.

Sheriff Gary Sexton and school board member Ronnie Broughton, who are already elected officials, also made earlier reports.

Sexton, Webster Parish Sheriff incumbent, received $51,830 in contributions. His expenditures totaled $12,678, which include $4,524 from 2010. Sexton's largest individual expenditures, totaling $2,304, paid for his fund-raiser. Of that, $4,324 went toward sponsorship of civic, community and political events and organizations and charitable donations.

Alton Hortman raised $250 and spent $225. The financial disparity between Sexton and Hortman is large because Hortman received a single contribution and paid a single expense: his filing fee.

In the state representative's race, Broughton leads in both categories, with $36,875 in contributions and $34,569 in expenditures. Of the expenditures, $665 were from 2009, and $525 were from 2010.

Broughton paid $27,351 to a political consulting firm in Baton Rouge. Of that, $7,000 was spent on a survey and $8,000 was allotted to campaign consulting. The remaining $12,429 money paid to the firm comprised most of his $14,735 in advertising expenditures.

Broughton rounded out his expenditures with $531 on a fund-raiser and $2,140 toward sponsorship and donations to civic, community and political events and organizations.

Jerri Ray de Pingre' raised $24,625, including a personal donation of $3,700 and 29 cents in bank interest. She also secured a $7,000 bank loan for her campaign. Candidates' may fund their own campaigns without limit by donating or loaning personal funds.

De Pingre' spent a total of $20,190. Of that, $5,257 went to a political consulting firm in Shreveport where $2,000 was used for a political consultant fee and $3,257 was part of her overall advertising expenditures of $13,205. The remaining $1,278 went for campaign supplies, civic and community organization dues, event sponsorship and fund-raiser attendance.

Gene Reynolds raised $31,396 and spent $16,615. He spent $10,535 on advertising, $4,917 on a fund-raiser, a "meet-and-greet" event and campaign supplies and expenses. He devoted the remaining $1,163 to donations comprising mostly of school supplies and sponsorship of civic, community and political events and organizations.

Gerald Holland had the least-raised contributions at $19,629 and the least-paid expenditures at $15,391. Holland also loaned his own campaign $28,445.

Holland spent $14,291 on advertising and $1,100 on campaign supplies, civic and community event sponsorship and banquet tickets.

In district elections, an individual may not donate more than $2,500 total, or more than $100 in cash, to a candidate in a single election. Political Action Committees may contribute no more than $5,000 and political parties may contribute without limit.

Candidates may secure loans from financial institutions without limit. However if any other signers appear on the loan, their liability is bound by the campaign contribution limits.

The primary and general elections are considered separate elections for contribution limits.

(Editor's note: The contribution and expenditure data was compiled from the candidates' submitted campaign finance forms, and retrieved from the Louisiana Ethics Program website (www.ethics.state.la.us). All monetary values were rounded to the nearest whole dollar.)






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