PACIFIC COUNTY — Out of 13 contested races, and dozens of uncontested races, only two local candidates are providing insight on who their donors are.
Pacific County and Wahkiakum County Superior Court Judge Donald Richter and his opponent, attorney Mike Turner, are the only candidates who’ve reported their donors ahead of the Nov. 4 election.
Richter has raised $9,837. Of this, $5,684 has come from himself. Richter’s biggest contributor is the Spokane-based Law Office of Thomas G. Jarrard, which donated $1,000. He received $750 from Spokane-based Sweetser Law Office.
Locally, Richter’s biggest contributor are Todd and Elaine Fosse, who’ve donated $410. Todd Fosse is a former Pacific County undersheriff. He sued the county after being fired by then-Sheriff Scott Johnson without explanation. Fosse reached a $450,000 settlement in March with the county.
Turner has raised $5,232. Of this amount, $4,938 has come from himself. Other donations came primarily from businesses. Turner’s received single donations ranging from $40 to $80 from the Tumwater Walmart, Tumwater Costco, Aberdeen Dollar Tree, and Raymond Dennis Company.
Superior Court judges in Washington make $194,574 this year, increasing to $204,424 on July 1, 2020.
This year, most candidates aren’t required to report their donations with the Public Disclosure Commission. Candidates who don’t raise more than $5,000 or live in jurisdictions of less than 5,000 people aren’t required to file donation reports. This rule applies to almost every candidate who voters will see on their ballots.
Candidates who do file their donation reports can choose to either fully report their donors, or to do a mini-report. Mini-reports are allowed for candidates who don’t raise more than $5,000 total or $500 from one person, according to the PDC. If a candidate chooses the mini-report option, they don’t have to file any record of their donors.
Fire District No. 1 Commissioner Dennis Long chose the mini-reporting option. Hospital District No. 2 candidates Michael Lignoski and Toni Williams also chose the mini-reporting option. No other candidates in contested races have filed donation reports.