Presiding commissioner candidates file campaign finance reports

Monday, October 18, 2010 | 7:29 p.m. CDT; updated 9:04 p.m. CDT, Monday, October 18, 2010

COLUMBIA — Business owners and educators are the primary financiers of the Boone County Presiding Commissioner race.

Democratic candidate J. Scott Christianson and Republican candidate Ed Robb filed their latest campaign finance reports Friday. As of Sept. 30, Christianson had roughly $16,000 on hand. Robb had about $8,100 in the bank.

For the entire general election and primary, Christianson has raised about $42,000 in cash contributions. A little more than a fifth of this came from people in the education industry. Business professionals contributed about $5,600. Out of his total contributions, Christianson received about $7,000 from outside of Columbia.

County auditor June Pitchford and Presiding Commissioner Ken Pearson both donated to Christianson. Pearson endorsed Christianson during his primary fight against farmer John Sam Williamson.

Robb has raised a total of about $23,000. In his latest report, filed Friday, he made an error that resulted in several thousand dollars worth of contributions being counted twice. He started the report an hour before the 5 p.m. deadline, he said. It was a big mistake, and he plans to amend the campaign finance report Monday, he said.

More than half of Robb's listed donations came from business owners. He didn't and is not required to disclose contributions under $100. Developers contributed a small amount to the campaign. About $250 came from St. Charles Road Development, a group that includes Tom Atkins, a business owner and downtown developer. 

Robb's donors cited his economic experience when asked why they were supporting him:

"Bottom line, I think he brings a tremendous bunch of tools for economic understanding and financial knowledge to the position." — Brad Eiffert, co-owner of Boone County Lumber.

"I just think his economic experience is good for Boone County." — Greg Nauser, owner of Nauser Investments. He is also the husband of Fifth Ward Councilwoman and current Republican candidate for the Missouri House District 24 Laura Nauser.

"He can take the numbers and look at the whole picture." — Jason Corrado, Housemart Realty owner.

Christianson's supporters said the Democratic candidate was the best fit for the job:

"Well, I just think he has the ability to do the job. After all, things are pretty tough right now, so I think we need someone who can step in and do the job right." — Nancy Wilson, Regis Salon hair stylist.

"I have been getting the impression that the opposition is saying that a lot of things need to be fixed that I'm not sure are broken." — Thomas Schneider, attorney for the Boone County Industrial Development Authority. Christianson is president of the group. 

"I just think his level-headedness, his willingness to consider all sides and his thoughtfulness about a decision are going to be very helpful." — Nancy Copenhaver, Randolph County deputy clerk.

The next finance reports for the candidates are due eight days before the Nov. 2 election.

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