Which local race is attracting most fundraising?

The two Republicans hoping to succeed retiring Bartholomew Circuit Court Judge Stephen Heimann have raised the most money among candidates for the May 3 primary.

Republican Scott Andrews has raised $28,585 since the beginning of the year compared to $17,443 reported by his opponent for the nomination, Kelly Benjamin.

However, Benjamin has more money to spend in the final weeks of the primary campaign. She had $7,006 as of April 8, compared to $2,011 still on hand for Andrews.

In the Bartholomew County Council race, a summary sheet shows one of the eight individuals seeking the three at-large seats has received substantially more contributions than any of the other candidates from either party.

According to his campaign finance report, Republican challenger Matt Miller — a local businessman — has raised $10,260 during the 15-week reporting period.

In comparison, fellow GOP candidate Jim Reed reported raising $3,100 through the first full week of this month.

Miller also included an $8,680 in-kind gift from Marvelure Strategies, 4831 Warren Drive, Columbus. In terms of direct contributions, Miller listed four donors providing his campaign a total of $500.

Miller reported having $5,846 on hand, while the incumbent Reed had $1,090 left to spend, according to the reports.

Although Democrat Pam Clark has raised $775, she reported investing more than $2,000 of her own money in her campaign. So far, she’s spent $2,806 before the primary.

The remaining five council at-large candidates have collectively raised less than $800, according to their reports. They are:

Bill Lentz: GOP incumbent, $321 in contributions with no cash on hand.

Gabrielle “Gaby” Cheek: Democrat challenger, $200 in contributions with $15 cash on hand

Michael Lovelace: GOP challenger, $198 in contributions with $170 cash on hand.

Lynne Fleming: Democrat challenger, $75 in contributions with $75 cash on hand.

Evelyn Pence: GOP incumbent, No money raised or spent as of April 8.

Besides the candidates, both of the major political parties in the Columbus area turned in campaign finance reports.

The Bartholomew County Republican Central Committee, under the guidance of chairman Barb Hackman, has raised $15,374 so far this year. And under new party chairman Nancy Ann Brown, the Bartholomew County Democratic Central Committee has $9,333 in contributions.

However, the Democrats still had $6,374 after the first week of April — which is about $760 more than their GOP counterparts during the same reporting period.

Next up: Bartholomew County coroner and commissioner candidate campaign finance reports coming later this week.

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The following are campaign finance report summaries for county candidates in two races with opponents in the May 3 primary.


Republican Scott Andrews


$5,000: Anthony Bozell, Columbus

$1,000: John Whittington, Columbus

$500 to $600: Gary and Markel Andrews, Hope; Dan and Sue Ann Thomas, Columbus

$450: Josh DeArmitt, Franklin.

$400: Josh and Regan Littrell, Columbus

$300: Richard and Leslie Smith, Columbus; David and Kelly Lee, Columbus

$200 to $299: Joshua and Elaine Sefchek, Columbus; Jason and Mindy Setser, Columbus; Mark and Michelle Ziegler, Columbus; James Lienhoop, Columbus; Tom and Jennifer Rager, Columbus; Amy Kushner, Columbus; John Rossow, Jr., Columbus; Greg Long, Columbus

$100 to $199: Robb Bonebrake, Columbus; Josh DeArmitt, Franklin – Rich and Lesli Gordon, Columbus; George and Sharon Gratz, Columbus; Brenda Sullivan, Columbus; Jan and Patricia Wettschurack, Columbus

In-kind: $12,380: Garb 2 Art – Dawn Andrews, Columbus

Expenditures: $411: Facebook for advertisements; $3,841: Harcourt of Milroy for signs; $867: Vistaprint for campaign literature; $1,406: United States Post Office for postage; $750: UPS Store for campaign literature; $466: The Republic for advertising; $1,330: LaMar for a billboard; $500: Kidscommons Carnivale (sponsorship); $600: Family Service, Inc. (sponsorship); $450: Advocates for Children (sponsor); $2,760: Reising Radio for advertising; $110: Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce annual meeting; $380: Sexton and Associates for memo pads; $723: Eagles Lodge for fundraiser; $400: Bartholomew County Public Library (sponsorship).

Republican Kelly Benjamin


$500: Robert and Helen Haddad, Columbus; Steven and Leah Engelstad, Columbus; Barbara and Robert Stevens, Columbus; Jim and Mary Henderson, Columbus; Robert and Patricia Bush, Columbus

$300: Robert and Barbara Smitherman, Columbus

$200 to $299:  Tom and Christine Vujovich, Columbus; John Kussman, Columbus; Mark and Katherine Akins, Columbus; Douglas and Marsha Sunkel, Columbus; Alan and Jo Ellen Watanabe, Columbus; Kenneth Whipker, Columbus; Forrest Ritz II, Columbus; Darren Buffo, Columbus; David and Susan Barker, Columbus; Susan Benjamin, Worthington, IN; Albert and Susan Roszczyk, Columbus; Aliki Leonard, Columbus

$100 to $199:  Eric and Cindy Frey, Columbus; Jim and Carolyn Trueblood, Columbus; David and Joan McKinney, Columbus; James and Sue Paris, Columbus

In-kind: $350: Benjamin Podiatry, Columbus; $710: Jesse Brand, Columbus

Expenditures:  $464: Tre Bicchieri for reception; $5,005: Brainstorm Print for campaign buttons, signs and banners; $241: Vistaprint for campaign literature; $198: Leigh Britt for supplies; $1,332: QMix for promotion; $150: Ben Hatton (website); $735: Bonnie Boatwright (advertising); $1,008: White River Broadcasting (advertising)


Republican Matt Miller


$200 to $299: Ed and Barb Stamper, Columbus.

$100 to $199: John and Sandy Carmichael, Columbus; Ronnie and Carolyn King, Crothersville; Pia O’Connor, Columbus, $120: Chicago’s Pizza, Columbus; $100: Daily’s Farm Market

In kind: $8,680: Marvelure Strategies, Columbus.

Expenditures: $95: BlueHost for technology; $166: WordPress for technology; $2,513: Harcourt Industries for marketing; $250: U.S. Postal Service for postal services; $263: Hoosier Sporting Goods (retail); $642: VistaPrint for marketing; $184: Sam’s Club (retail); $180: Wal-Mart (retail)

Republican Jim Reed

Contributions: $3,100: Jim Reed, Elizabethtown

Expenditures: $2,010: Harcourt Industries, Milroy; $128: Burton Shirts, Edinburgh; $547: The Columbus Republic

Democrat Pam Clark

Debts: $2,769: Pamela A. Clark, Columbus (loan). 

Expenditures: $268: UPS Store (mailings); $157: U.S. Postal Service for postal services; $2,140: Tony London Company for marketing supplies

Republican Bill Lentz

Contributions: $321: Bill Lentz, Columbus

Expenditures: $321: The Columbus Republic for advertising

Democrat Gabrielle “Gaby” Cheek

Contributions:  $200: Dr. Arman Borhan, Columbus

Expenditures:  None $100 or more

Republican Michael Lovelace

Contributions:  Five contributions less than $100 each

Expenditures: None $100 or more

Democrat Lynne Fleming

Contributions: None $100 or more

Expenditures: None $100 or more

Republican Evelyn Pence

Contributions: None

Expenditures: None