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Archive for Tuesday, October 31, 2000

McElhaney wins campaign fund race

County commission hopefuls raise thousands

October 31, 2000

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Douglas County Commission candidate Jere McElhaney has out-raised his fellow commission hopefuls.

According to reports filed Monday, McElhaney, a Republican who seeks the 3rd District seat being vacated by Tom Taul, raised $10,950 from July 21 through Oct. 26, the most recent campaign finance reporting period.

All totaled, McElhaney has raised $23,780 the most of any county commission candidate since he announced his candidacy.

State law requires candidates to file campaign finance reports for primary and general election cycles if they receive or spend more than $500.

McElhaney, owner of McElhaney Fence Builders, 716 N. Second St., said he considers himself lucky and attributed the amount of money raised to his campaign helpers.

"We've got a fantastic steering committee and our chairman Bobbie Flory and treasurer Pat Slabaugh," he said. "People in the community care and want to see a good tradition continue."

McElhaney's father, Louie McElhaney, served on the county commission for two terms, from 1989 to 1997.

Because of the amount already raised, Jere McElhaney said he has started turning down contribution offers. He has spent $11,479 and has $1,213 remaining.

"We don't want to gather a big war chest and have a bunch left over," he said.

In contrast to McElhaney, Larry Kipp, the Democratic candidate in the 3rd District, raised $17,585 during the same period, but the amount includes a $12,000 check from his wife, Elizabeth. Of the total amount, Kipp spent $16,875 and had $2,832 remaining.

"We as the Kipps are lending that amount of money to the campaign," he said. "We're still doing fund-raising, but needed to keep the cash flowing in."

With the general election only seven days away, Kipp said he wanted to concentrate on talking to voters in his district and do more fund-raising later.

"I started walking in early July and haven't stopped," he said.

Kipp owns a publishing company and has interests in a Canadian fishing lodge and software company.

Running a close second to McElhaney is Bob Johnson, the Republican candidate for the 2nd District, who raised $10,400. He spent $11,707 and had $964 on hand. Meanwhile, Johnson's opponent, Democrat Dan Gregg, a Eudora businessman, has raised $1,390. He spent $3,687 and had $51 cash on hand.

At the beginning of the three-month period, the county commission candidates had these carryover amounts in their campaign chests: McElhaney, $1,742; Kipp, $2,122; Johnson, $2,271, Johnson; and Gregg, $2,348.

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