Dems and Friends of Erickson did report on finances

By Kevin E. Foley

For the second time in a row, the Philipstown Republican Committee has not filed any campaign finance reports with the New York State Board of Elections (NYSBOE) on its 2011 campaign activity as required by state law. At the last filing date of Oct. 7 the committee filed a “no activity” report indicating no financial transactions whatsoever during the reporting period Sept. 19-Oct. 3 despite the appearance of campaign ads, literature and signs throughout the town.

This time the committee has not filed anything at all for the 11-day pre-general election reporting period from Oct. 4-24. The report was due to be directly posted on the NYSBOE website or mailed on a computer diskette or DVD to the state in Albany by Oct.28. The required reports list information about specific campaign contributions received, itemized expenditures and opening and closing balances for the reporting period. The Philipstown Republican Committee is often listed as the “paid by” party for a number of advertisements in the Putnam County News and Recorder (PCNR) for the entire Republican town ticket as well as for the individual candidates, Lee Erickson for supervisor, Barbara Scuccimarra and Katie Giachinta DeMarco for Town Board. It is also listed that way on signs and campaign brochures.

John Conklin, a spokesman for the NYSBOE, said that the committee and its treasurer were subject to an “order to show cause” for not filing reports as required. He acknowledged that under the law such an order would likely be withdrawn even if the committee filed the required reports after the election. The maximum penalty for failing to comply with the law is $500.

Erickson’s personal campaign committee, Friends of Lee Erickson, did file a report indicating an opening balance of $556.58, contributions of $2,100, expenditures of $1,591.69 (including a new suit for the candidate to wear for the PCNR debate) and a closing balance of $1,064.89. This amount of money transacted seems unlikely to account for the scope of campaign activity for Erickson’s campaign during this period. His running mates, based on earlier filed reports, appear to have ceded their campaign finance responsibilities entirely to the Philipstown Republican Committee.

The Philipstown Democratic Club did file a report indicating a $6,467.04 opening balance, $4,265 in contributions and campaign-related expenditures of $4,412.27 leaving a closing balance of $6,319.77. The club represents the local Democratic committee, which has been supporting the town ticket of Richard Shea for supervisor, and Nancy Montgomery and Dave Merandy for Town Board. Merandy and Montgomery have relied on either the club or Friends of Richard Shea for support.

The Friends of Richard Shea committee also filed a report listing an opening balance of $11,326.06, contributions and receipts of $4, 958.84 (including a $1,134.84 transfer from the Democratic Club), expenditures of $5,116.48 and a closing balance of $11,168.42. The next time committees or individual campaigns are required to file is Dec. 5 almost a month after the Nov. 8 election.

Behind The Story

Type: News

News: Based on facts, either observed and verified directly by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.

Foley is the former managing editor of The Current and a partner in foleymyers communications in Northampton, Massachusetts.