Supervisor Palmer tops Lowry in first finance report of 2017

Two Democratic challengers for Charlottesville City Council outraised incumbent Bob Fenwick by about $10,000 each in the first quarter of 2017, state documents show.

In Albemarle County, Supervisor Liz Palmer, a Democrat, outraised John Lowry, her Republican foe, in her bid for a second term representing the Samuel Miller District.

All local candidates who have filed to run for office in Albemarle County and Charlottesville have submitted campaign finance reports covering activity in the first three months of 2017, according to paperwork filed with the State Board of Elections.

Two seats are up in the Charlottesville City Council race.

Both Democratic challengers in the June 13 primary raised more than $10,000, including in-kind donations, while Fenwick raised significantly less.

Heather Danforth Hill raised $12,634 in the first quarter and spent $6,734 during the period. Significant contributions include $1,500 from herself, $1,000 from Carol Hurt and $1,000 from Tim Davis. Andrea Anderson contributed $750 and five people donated $500 each.  

Carol Hurt is a current member and Hill is a former member of Charlottesville Tomorrow’s board of directors.

Hill also reported $1,500 in services from Robert Radifera Photography, as well as $1,223 in other in-kind donations, including some from herself. Her campaign spent $3,934 on expenses, including $1,560 to Capitol Promotions and $1,016 for T&N Printing. She had an ending balance of $5,900.32 on March 31.

Amy Laufer raised $11,230 in cash and reported $156 in in-kind contributions. Her biggest donation of $2,000 was from her husband, Aaron. Real-estate broker William Walton donated $1,500, as did Douglas Brooks.

Laufer spent $2,501 during the period, including $939 on signs, and had $8,728 in the bank on March 31.

Fenwick raised $1,549 during the period with three contributions that came from former city councilors. Dede Smith gave $500, Tom Vandever gave $250 and Kevin Lynch contributed $200. Fenwick also reported a loan of $508.82 to himself, as well as $599 in contributions under $100. The incumbent spent $372.22 in the quarter.

All three Democrats paid a $280.18 filing fee to participate in the Democratic primary.  

“By law, the primary filing fee is equal to 2 percent of one year’s minimum salary for the office sought,” said city registrar Rosanna Bencoach. “If the candidate is unopposed for the nomination, then a primary is not held for that office, and the filing fee is later refunded.”

All independent candidates who have filed also submitted reports.

Nikuyah Walker raised $426, including a $200 donation from Walt Heinecke. She spent $28 and has a balance of $397.

Paul Long reported $200 in contributions, including $140 from himself. He spent $47.36 on printing and postage. Dale Woodson reported $125 in campaign contributions and $87.73 in spending on bumper stickers.

Nancy Carpenter filed a report that stated she had no campaign activity during the reporting period.

Albemarle County supervisors

In the only contested race for the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors, Samuel Miller District incumbent Liz Palmer outraised her Republican challenger, John Lowry.

Palmer raised $7,200 in the first quarter of the year and had a balance of $8,979 on March 31. She only spent $110 during the period. Palmer’s largest donation of $5,000 came from Ivy resident Sonjia Smith, a fre-quent benefactor of Democratic candidates.

The incumbent received $500 donations from Denise Walsh and Leslie Wilcox and $250 donations from Richard Brewer, Denise Lunsford and Cynthia Neff.

Lowry had a balance of $5,402 at the end of the period and reported a $5,000 donation to his own cam-paign. He also received a pair of $200 donations. The candidate spent $528 on graphic design services and a $500 payment to John Darden.

Jack Jouett District incumbent Diantha McKeel has the most cash on hand at the end of the reporting period. The board’s chairwoman began the year with $11,576 in her campaign account and raised $6,700 in the first three months of the year. Her largest contribution came from Richard Hewitt, who donated $2,500.

Former Supervisor Dennis Rooker gave $1,000 and five people gave $500, including developer Vito Cetta. Neff, who ran unsuccessfully in the Rivanna District in 2011, made a $250 donation in March.

McKeel spent no money during the first quarter and currently has no opposition.

Rio District candidate Ned Gallaway raised $9,414 since the beginning of the year, with $5,000 coming from Smith. Rooker donated $1,000 and three people donated $500. Another $200 was transferred from Gallaway’s political action committee for his 2015 race for the state Senate.

Gallaway is also unopposed.

Other offices

In the race to be the Democratic candidate for commonwealth’s attorney of Charlottesville, Joe Platania raised a total of $12,179.50, including $9,950 in cash contributions worth more than $100 each. His highest donation of $2,500 came from Roberta Williamson, and he had three gifts of $1,000.  The assistant commonwealth’s attorney had $6,718 in his account at the end of the month.

His opponent, attorney Jeff Fogel, raised no financial contributions but reported two loans to himself totaling $3,655.86. His largest expenditure of $2,655.86 went to the Charlottesville treasurer as the filing fee to run in the primary. He spent another $153.52 on buttons and had $846.51 remaining on March 31.  

Commissioner of Revenue Todd Divers is unopposed in the Democratic primary and currently has no challengers in the general election.

He reported $150.32 in contributions but spent $1,681.70 to appear on the ballot in the June 13 primary. That amount is recorded in the campaign finance report as a loan from himself. However, money was refunded to Divers because he has no opponent in the primary.

For city sheriff, incumbent James Brown reported no financial contributions but had a balance of $752.50 at the beginning of the year.

City Treasurer Jason Vandever reported no contributions.

In the Charlottesville School Board race, both Juandiego Wade and Leah Puryear filed requests to be exempt from campaign finance reporting requirements because neither plan to seek any contributions.

Lisa Larson-Torres reported $925 in contributions, including $225 from herself. She did not spend any money during the quarter.

There are three races for Albemarle County School Board, two of which are contested.

In the Samuel Miller District, challenger Julian Waters is looking to unseat incumbent Graham Paige.

“The paper filing that he filed with us for the most recent filing period is a ‘no activity’ filing, where he attests no money received and no money expended for the reporting cycle,” said Jake Washburne, the Albemarle County registrar. “The balance on hand in his campaign war chest is $1078.80.”

Waters filed paperwork that states he raised no money during the period.

In the Rio District, Katrina Callsen and Mary McIntyre are vying to replace Pam Moynihan, who is not seeking another term.

McIntyre reported $2,697.36 in donations, including $1,379.36 in in-kind services. She had $1,252.47 in cash at the end of the period.

“For Katrina Callsen, she filed too recently to have been required to submit a campaign finance report for the most recent reporting period,” Washburne said.

Kate Acuff, the incumbent in the uncontested Jack Jouett District, filed a report that showed no campaign activity in the period. She has a balance of $826.96.