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School board campaigns list funds, expenses

October 30, 2000

School board campaigns list funds, expenses



By TARA REILLY / Staff Writer


Washington County Board of Education candidates Roxanne Ober and Bernadette Wagner have raised nearly $15,000 for their campaign and spent almost $12,000, according to the Washington County Board of Elections.

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Much of the money came from donations and a Sept. 1 golf fund-raiser at Black Rock Golf Course, the two candidates said. Seventy-four supporters paid $60 each to golf in the fund-raiser, Ober said.

The deadline to file campaign expenses with the Board of Elections was Friday, but candidates could not include contributions or expenses made after Oct. 22, Ober said. The documents include all money raised or spent since Feb. 21.

Candidate Edward Forrest raised $1,289 and spent $1,283, according to the campaign finance report. He said at the Oct. 19 League of Women Voters forum that about $1,000 came from out of pocket.

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The remaining five candidates, Russell Williams, John Cohen, Doris Nipps, Andrew Humphreys and Edwin Hayes all spent less than $1,000 and were not required to file reports.

The eight candidates are running for four open seats in the Nov. 7 general election. Each School Board member makes $4,800 a year. The board president makes $100 more.

Campaign documents show Ober and Wagner, who are running as a team and sharing expenses, raised $14,851 and spent $11,971.

Wagner said about 330 people contributed to their campaign fund.

"We were pleased by the number of people," Wagner said. "So many believe that we could make a difference."

The two also contributed about $500 each out-of-pocket, she said.

Some of Ober's and Wagner's expenses include $3,752 in media advertising, which includes newspaper ads and four billboards, $2,682 in campaign materials and printing costs, $2,674 for the golf fund-raiser and $462 in direct mailing expenses.

Ober said the two researched the 1998 School Board election and noticed that the top vote-getter, Mary Wilfong, spent the most money on her campaign, $5,745. That's when they decided they should gauge their campaign accordingly, Ober said.

"We were both surprised in seeing the outpouring of generosity," she said. "I think that's a message that people are interested in education and want a change."

Wagner said the money she and Ober spent on the campaign shows that the two are committed to the education of Washington County students.

"We don't mess around," she said. "We take things seriously."

While Ober and Wagner are campaigning as a team and share expenses, voters will have the option of voting for both or one or the other.

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