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1998 primary election spending report listed

by Julie R. Cryser


(June 17) Donald Kopp II spent $5,198 less than Mike Queen in the primary election, nearly the margin by which Kopp beat Queen to become the Democratic candidate for Harrison County Circuit Clerk in November's general election.

Kopp spent $8,127 during the primary election for advertising and such, while Queen came in as the biggest spender in the county's circuit clerk race. Queen cashed in $13,327 on the election, according to post-primary reports filed with the Harrison County Clerk's office.

Kopp beat Queen by a margin of 4,658 votes.

The post-election campaign reports are supposed to be filed with the clerk's office within 30 days of the primary election. This year's primary election reports show that one uncontested race had some of the biggest money contributed and that many of the winners, unlike in the circuit clerk race, spent the most amount of money.

Kopp's contributors for the race included a $1,000 campaign contribution from Beckley native and Congressman Nick Rahall, D-W.Va. The highest amount of money a contributor is allowed to donate to a campaign during each election is $1,000.

Queen's largest contributors included $500 from Charlotte Sharpe; $1,000 from retired Clarksburg resident James Allen; and $500 from Andy and Lisa Lane of Lane Brothers in Bridgeport.

Charles Hall, who ran on the Republican ticket for circuit clerk, spent $865 on the campaign, according to the records. He will face off against Kopp in the general election. His wife, Carolyn Hall, who ran on the Democratic ticket for a magistrate post, spent just a little over $2,000 on her campaign, according to her last filing.

Harrison County Commission President Thomas Keeley ran unopposed in his race but still raised $25,325 for his campaign and spent $8,675 of it. Keeley had a host of contributors, including local attorneys, engineers, real estate agents, doctors, trucking companies and coal industry executives.

Keeley's largest expenditures were $4,190 with the WV Media Group for consulting fees, a little over $1,000 with Clarksburg Newspapers on advertising and $400 with the Italian Heritage Festival. Keeley also borrowed and paid back $950 from the Friends of Tom Keeley, his own re-election campaign committee.

According to the Office of the Secretary of State, Keeley can either keep the remaining $16,650 to fund his next campaign, donate it to charity, a non-profit group, another political party or other candidates.

In the Harrison County Board of Education race, incumbent Bud Pritchard spent $844. He lost the race. Winner James Bennett spent $615; D.D. Meighen spent $3,480; and Sally Cann spent $3,411.

The smallest spender in the board race was Gary Fain, who reported spending $10.60 on his unsuccessful campaign. Francis McQuillan appeared to have come in second for the least amount spent, spending $47.

Warren ÒGizzy'' Davis won the race for magistrate on the Democratic ticket and spent $3,360 doing it.

Michael ÒMatty'' Shaffer spent the most money, $8,632, including a $1,069 bank loan, of any of the magistrate candidates. Keith Marple, the loan Republican magistrate candidate in the race, spent $1,426, including a $1,100 loan.