Political Notebook

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Brown leads fundraising race

The first fundraising deadline in the Senate District 15 race shows Liz Brown with an initial lead in campaign cash.

Brown raised the most at $42,700, with about $28,000 on hand.

The report is the 2013 annual report but covers only a few months of active fundraising for the candidates.

“Liz’s campaign finance report clearly demonstrates her support within the district from individuals and respected members of the business community,” campaign manager Veronica Wilson said.

“Liz was able to raise the most money in a brief period and during the busiest holiday season of the year, no less.

“Her fundraising capacity is larger than that of her opponents, demonstrated by her ability to raise moderate amounts from voters within the district,” Wilson said.

But about $15,500 of Brown’s fundraising came from personal donations from her and her husband.

Allen County Councilman Darren Vogt raised about $25,681 and has $16,000 on hand. None of his donations came from himself.

Allen County Sheriff Ken Fries raised $18,532, with almost all of that left to spend. He did not contribute to his own campaign.

Brown pointed out in her news release that almost a third of Fries’ contributions came from one individual. Interestingly, more than a third of her contributions came from her and her husband.

And businessman Jeff Snyder raised $12,650, with almost $11,000 on hand. Much of his fundraising – about $8,000 – was a personal donation from himself.

Going for gold

Sure, we’re all tired of the snow. But with Fort Wayne being about 2 inches from breaking the record for the all-time snowiest winter, there’s something new we can all disagree on: whether the record should be broken.

Some feel that if they ever see another snowflake, it will be too soon.

Others say we’ve suffered so much, we might as well get the record to show for our troubles.

Even the Allen County Council split on the issue.

“We’re 2 inches away from the record, and I sure hope we don’t make it,” said Darren Vogt, R-3rd.

“Well, in the spirit of Olympic competition, I hope we do,” countered Tom Harris, R-2nd.

Record or no, we’re just pulling for spring.

From county to state

The president and Republican appointee of the Allen County Election Board has resigned to serve on the Indiana Election Commission.

Gov. Mike Pence appointed Zachary Klutz to replace Dan Dumezich, who left to take a position with the Indiana Republican Party.

The Indiana Election Commission is responsible for the administration of state election and campaign finance laws.

“I’m honored to accept the governor’s appointment and utilize my local election experience at the state level,” Klutz said. “I will miss my active involvement with local election administration and my participation on the Allen County Election Board but look forward to serving a larger base of Indiana voters at the Indiana Election Commission.”

Klutz was appointed to the Allen County Election Board by Allen County Republican Party Chairman Steve Shine in 2009. Shine also made the recommendation of Klutz to Pence for the state position.

Klutz is a partner and corporate attorney with Barrett & McNagny in Fort Wayne.

Shine will appoint his replacement on the local board by Wednesday.

Dan Stockman of The Journal Gazette contributed to this column.

To reach Political Notebook by email, contact Brian Francisco at bfrancisco@jg.net or Niki Kelly at nkelly@jg.net. An expanded Political Notebook can also be found as a daily blog at www.journalgazette.net/politicalnotebook.

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