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Judicial hopefuls report finances

September 03, 1998|By BRENDAN KIRBY

Washington County Circuit Judges W. Kennedy Boone III and Donald E. Beachley collectively have raised about $5,000 more than their challenger in their bid to win election to 15-year terms on the bench.

The judges, running as a slate, have raised $17,493. Nearly a third of that has gone for fund-raising costs.

Since Gregory Bannon has financed his campaign virtually entirely through loans to himself and has not had to spend much money on fund-raising, he has been able to match Beachley and Boone nearly dollar for dollar in media advertising and campaign materials, according to finance reports filed by the candidates.

"I think we've been very competitive. I'm satisfied where we are in the campaign," said Bannon, a Hagerstown attorney who is mounting a run for judge after Gov. Parris Glendening did not appoint him to a vacancy on the bench.

Bannon's campaign finance report showed that he raised $12,049. Most of that - $11,000 - came from loans Bannon made to his campaign.

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Bannon spent $8,624 on media advertisements and materials such as yard signs and pamphlets, according to his report. He had $3,271 cash on hand with about a month left until the primary.

Bannon's report shows $820 in contributions. He said when he launched his campaign that he would not accept donations from lawyers.

"I stuck to that," he said.

Beachley and Boone said they were pleased with the money they have been able to raise.

"We have enough money to carry us through the primary," Boone said.

The bulk of the money the slate took in - $16,425 - came from a fund-raiser held in May.

"We were very pleased with that turnout," said Beachley, who said about 450 people attended.

The judges have a cash balance of $2,722. Beachley said both men will probably loan money to the campaign if they determine they need to spend more money.

"It shouldn't be a tremendous amount," he said.

All three candidates have cross-filed to run in both the Republican and Democratic primaries. The top two vote-getters from each primary face off in the general election for two seats on the bench. It is possible for all three candidates to win nominations in the primaries and face each other again in the general election.

If that happens, Beachley and Boone said they would re-evaluate their financial situation.

Bannon, too, said he is not sure if he will have to spend more money, but he said he is almost out of campaign signs.

"We'll just take it as it comes," he said.

The primary election is Sept. 15 and the general election is Nov. 3.

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