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Hurd needs two tries to get financial report done, numbers change

J. H. Osborne • Apr 15, 2018 at 12:00 PM

BLOUNTVILLE — In the race to become Sullivan County’s next trustee — in essence, the county’s treasurer — GOP candidate Terri Hurd  seemed to get off on a rocky start last week as the first financial disclosure deadline of the campaign came and went. Hurd’s campaign filed a financial disclosure on April 10, the deadline for first quarter reports. But it reported a negative balance on hand and listed a loan — but in the wrong place and required corrections, according to public documents on file at the Sullivan County Election Commission.

A corrected report was filed by Hurd’s campaign on April 12 with the loan listed in the right place, creating a positive balance on hand. But the amount of the loan was different than the amount listed on the first form.

April 10 was the deadline for all campaigns in the upcoming party primaries or county general election to file a first quarter financial disclosure report. The report is supposed to cover the period of either: the date of the first contribution or first expenditure, whichever occurred earlier, and extend through March 31, 2018; or, if a year-end supplemental report was filed covering the period through January 15, 2018, the report covers the period from January 16, 2018 through March 31, 2018.

On April 10, the Times News began checking the Sullivan County Election Commission’s website to obtain filed reports, which are posted online. Of the five Republicans seeking the trustee’s office (no Democrats or independents are running, so the winner of the GOP primary will advance unopposed to the county general election ballot in August as a shoo-in for the win), only Hurd’s report couldn’t be located online. The other four (Matthew Jerry Johnson, Susan Arnold Ramsey, Angela Taylor and Jack Young) were available.

On April 11, the Times News visited the Sullivan County Election Office and asked if Hurd had missed the deadline or if her report had simply not been uploaded — and asked for a copy of a report if one had been filed, as it would be public record. Office staff provided the newspaper with a copy of Hurd’s initial report, time-stamped as received on the 10th, and explained it had not been put online because it was incorrect (due to the negative balance on hand figure, caused by misplacement of an outstanding loan) and Hurd had been asked to submit a corrected report.

Later, the Times News visited Administrator of Elections Jason Booher and asked about Hurd’s report. Booher reviewed the report and zeroed in quickly on where the loan was reported. Booher explained the reports are submitted online, using software that automatically calculates some figures. So if one is entered in the wrong field, it throws off the calculation elsewhere.The initial report from Hurd’s campaign listed an outstanding loan, from herself, at the beginning of the period of $4,453.57 — but the date of the loan was listed as March 28, which means it should have been entered as a “loan received” during the period.

By some point on April 12, Hurd’s campaign — Tom Parham is listed as her treasurer — submitted an updated report. Where the initial report showed the campaign being $4,930.27 in the red, the new version lists a positive balance on hand of $336.43. The loan? It’s entered as “received” during the period from Hurd (still on March 28), rather than “outstanding” at the beginning of the period — but now the loan amount is $5,316.67, not the $4,453.57 entered on the initial report.

In all, Hurd’s updated financial disclosure report states the campaign received $6,216.68 during the period Jan. 1 through March 31 and spent $5,880.25.

As for the rest:

Johnson: reported receipts for the first quarter totaling $8,790; total spending of $4,662.07; a balance on hand of $4,127.93; and no loans outstanding.

Ramsey: reported receipts for the first quarter totaling $15,448.94; total spending of $15,403.09; a balance on hand of $45.85; and total loans outstanding from herself of $11,798.94.

Taylor: reported receipts for the first quarter totaling $20,177.13; total spending of $14,149.45; a balance on hand of $6,027.68; and total loans outstanding from herself of $20,000.

Young: reported receipts for the first quarter totaling $35,200.94; total spending of $11,681.89; a balance on hand of $23,519.05; and total loans outstanding from himself of $34,900.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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