Republican Committee Reports ‘No Activity’ in Campaign Spending

Shea and Erickson also file data with state

By Kevin E. Foley and Liz Schevtchuk Armstrong

According to online filings on the New York State Board of Elections (BOE) website, the Philipstown Republican Committee filed a “No-Activity” statement for the latest campaign finance reporting period. The Philipstown Democratic Club did file data for the period. State law requires that both individual campaigns and political party committees report all financial activity, using a schedule set by the BOE. Called the “32-day pre-general” election period, the latest reporting window covers Sept. 20 to Oct. 3. (The election, Nov. 8, occurs 32 days after the date, Oct. 7, when the filing statements were due at the BOE.)

As described in the BOE rules, “no activity” means that “a candidate/committee has had no activity (i.e., receipts and/or expenditures, such as interest, dividends, and bank charges) during the required reporting period.” A BOE spokesperson, John Conklin, confirmed that if the site was displaying a “no activity” for the committee then that was the committee’s latest filing. He also confirmed the requirement that any funds raised or expenditures made for any purpose by the committee, for campaign material, advertisements, events etc., would have to be reported. At least nine advertisements supporting the local Republican candidates and paid for by the Republican Committee appeared in the combined the Sept. 21 and Sept 28 editions of the Putnam County News and Reporter (PCNR). The PCNR advertising policy states: “all political advertising, no matter the source, must be paid in advance prior to publication.”

 In its filing made in September for the state’s “10-day post-primary” election period, the Philipstown Republican Committee reported that it began with an opening balance of $2,579.31; raised $11, 724.33; and spent $9,407.77, leaving it with a closing balance of $4,895.87. In July the Republican Committee reported that the Republican candidate for town supervisor, Lee Erickson, and the Town Board candidates Barbara Scuccimarra, an incumbent councilor, and Katie Giachinta DeMarco, had each contributed $2,500 to the committee. Friends of Lee Erickson reported activity for the latest period with an opening balance of $3,132.28; receipts totaling $150 and expenses of $2,725.70; leaving his campaign with a balance of $556.58. The Republican Committee paid for a large-size brochure supporting Erickson’s campaign mailed during the latest reporting period, but when funds for the printing and postage were spent or will be expended and reported is not clear.

 The Philipstown Democratic Club’s pre-general election summary showed an opening balance of $7,013.45; no contributions; and expenses of $546.41, with a closing balance of $6,467.04. In its expense-allocation breakdown, the Democratic Club reported $600.32 for Montgomery, $600.31 for Merandy, and $346.82 for Richard Shea, the Philipstown supervisor seeking re-election. Shea has an individual committee, the Friends of Richard Shea, which filed 32-day pre-general election data. Its summary lists an opening balance of $5,937.88; contributions of $10, 955, and total expenses of $5,566.82, leaving a closing balance of $11,326.06.

The state’s database contains “no itemized financial disclosure data” on Democrats David Merandy, a first-time hopeful, and Nancy Montgomery, an incumbent, both running for Town Board member/councilor slots, indicating the Philipstown Democratic Club as the “authorized committee” for both..

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