St. Clair County Dems raise $156k in first half of year

Ann Knef Jul. 21, 2006, 4:42am

The St. Clair County Democratic Central Committee raised $156,079 in the first half of 2006, according to records filed with the Illinois State Board of Elections. And even though the committee spent more than that in six months, it ended a recent reporting period with $27,524.43 on hand.

The county Democrats began the year with $39,635 and spent a total of $168,189 on items including printing, miscellaneous supplies and precinct committeemen.

Transfers into the committee from Democratic politicians' campaigns represented the largest share of the total, or $52,370.

Rosella Wamser, outgoing St. Clair County Regional Superintendent of Schools -- who abruptly retired June 30 -- transferred $12,500 from her treasure chest to the county Democrats. Her contribution was matched in size by the Committee to Elect Suarez. Charles Suarez is seeking his fourth term.

As of Friday morning, the St. Clair County Republican Central Committee had not yet filed its D-2 semi-annual report with the Board of Elections. Statewide, political action committees have until July 31 to file these reports which reflect activity between Jan. 1 through June 30, 2006.

The largest individual contribution to the county Democrats came from St. Clair County Sheriff Merle Justus at $12,500. Congressman Jerry Costello ponied up $10,000; State Sen. James Clayborne committee gave $8,670; State Rep. Jay Hoffman's committee gave $4,135 and Belleville personal injury attorney Thomas Keefe donated $2,000.

The Democrats received two $15,000 loans, one from attorney Robert Sprague, chairman of the St. Clair County Democrats and the other from his wife, Patty Sprague.

The Committee owes $10,000 to Committee to Elect John Baricevic, a St. Clair County Circuit judge.

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