Judge holds fundraising edge in race
While the votes have yet to be counted, incumbent District Judge Tod Young showed an overwhelming fundraising advantage over challenger Caren Cafferata-Jenkins in the first contested race for the seat since 1986.
Candidates were required to file their contribution and expenditure reports with the Nevada Secretary of State’s Office for July 1 through Sept. 30 on Oct. 15.
Expenditures for the final weeks of the Nov. 3 general election won’t be reported to the state until Jan. 15, 2021, when candidates are already in office.
Young reported raising $17,575 between July 1 and Sept. 30 in defense of his seat. That brings his total fundraising to $33,376, according to documents filed with the Nevada Secretary of State’s Office. Since the beginning of the campaign, Young has spent $21,677, leaving him with $11,697 at the end of September. Young has enjoyed significant support from a broad spectrum of 31 donors. The largest donation of $5,000 came from the San Francisco law firm of Michael Lieberman.
Cafferata-Jenkins raised $3,165 during the last quarter bringing her total to $7,381 this year. That includes $1,375 she donated to her own campaign. She reported spending $5,749 for her entire campaign.
Libertarian Charles Holt, running for Douglas County commissioner, reported raising $14,828 in cash and in-kind contributions. Holt spent $5,000 of his own money on the campaign, which he started July 22.
Lois Wray donated $2,000 and he received $500 each from Carter Hill Homes, Chris Lang and Scott Smith.
In-kind contributions of $6,203 were made by Trans-Sierra Investments and Park Ranch Holdings.
Holt reported spending $5,740, mostly on advertising.
Even with the additional cash, Holt faces a significant fundraising deficit against opponent Republican Mark Gardner.
While Gardner only reported raising $50 during the period covered by the report, he had a cumulative total of $19,090.
He reported spending $2,215, including a $1,000 donation to the Cupertino Veterans Memorial. Despite spending $24,257 during the total campaign cycle, he’s reporting a fund balance of $9,188.
The only other two countywide races are for Douglas County School Board trustee.
School Board Area 3 candidate Larry Sidney has $10,000 set aside for his campaign, though he reported no expenditures as of Sept. 30. Opponent Douglas Englekirk reported no contributions to his campaign. He spent $1,653 of his own money on advertising related materials. Both men live at Lake Tahoe and are seeking Keith Byer’s seat on the board.
School Board Area 1 candidate Tony Magnotta reported $2,500 in contributions, with $1,000 coming from the Douglas County Republican Central Committee and another $1,000 coming from the Sierra Nevada Republican Women. Opponent Yvonne Wagstaff reported no contributions or expenditures in the campaign.
One of the first challenged elections involves two seats on the East Fork Fire Protection District Board of Directors.
Terry Faff is seeking election to the District 1 seat he was appointed to last year. He’s facing challenger retired firefighter John Bellona, who also sought appointment to the board.
Bellona has raised $2,537 in contributions and $1,067 in expenditures. Bellona’s key contributor was $2,000 from the Professional Firefighters of Nevada.
District 5 Director Steven Mihelic is being challenged by Minden resident Michael Sommers.
Neither Mihelic nor Sommers reported any contributions in their filings with the Secretary of State’s Office.
Mihelic reported no contributions and $641 in expenditures, while Somers reported $1,091.38.
Minden-Gardnerville Sanitation District candidates Tim Bunting, Barbara Smallwood and Ray Wilson reported no contributions or expenditures. Smallwood is seeking re-election to the board that operates the Minden sewer plant. Wilson is hoping to reclaim the seat on the board he lost in 2018. Candidate Seth Altamirano told The Record-Courier that he’s moving out of the district and won’t be able to serve on the board.
Three of East Fork Township’s large improvement districts are contested on the ballots. The district serve as the equivalent of city governments in Douglas County, which has no incorporated towns.
Gardnerville Ranchos residents Darby Baligad, Bob McDowell and James McKalip are vying for two seats on the district board.
Baligad reported $200 in contributions and no expenditures. McDowell reported spending $2,301 on his campaign. McKalip reported receiving $4,495 in contributions and spending $2,44.51. McKalip’s largest contributor was the Sierra Nevada Republican Women. A member of the Good Governance Group, McKalip also received donations from several residents associated with the group.
In contrast, Indian Hills residents Dale Dunham, Teri Gray and Russ Siegman reported no contributions or expenditures in their race. While Siegman filed a report with the Secretary of State’s Office on Oct. 7, he did not reply to The Record-Courier’s request for information.
Resident Anthony Rivano said he was no longer interested in serving on the district board.
Topaz Ranch Estates resident Brandon Taylor reported spending all $650 he received in contributions during the campaign. George Barber spent $115.95 and received no contributions. Both Gerald “Sparky” Clark and Sharon Ferris reported no contributions or expenditures.
The Record-Courier published its election guide on Oct. 10. To find it visit https://www.recordcourier.com/news/2020-general-election-guide/