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July 14, 2011

Less than $14,000 spent on petition drive

The latest campaign finance filings show that freshman Del. Neil C. Parrott spent just under $14,000 on his successful drive to put the Maryland Dream Act on the 2012 ballot.

Parrott, a Washington County Republican, kicked off a signature gathering effort in mid-April with $4,800 of his own money. As cash trickled in, he paid himself back. The campaign reported a balance of $11,095, funds Parrott can use to fight any legal challenge.

"We ran a really clean tight campaign and used the money very effectively," Parrott said.

More than 130,000 Marylanders signed the petition, and as of this afternoon 104,728 signatures had been validated by the state board of elections. Local boards must finish counting next week

Money came mostly from donations of $50 or less, and the group received little direct financial support from other Maryland elected officials. Exceptions include Del. Kathy Afzali, a fellow freshman Republican, who contributed $300 from her campaign account. Del. Michael Hough, another freshman GOP, sent $150.

Unlike campaign finance forms for elected officials, the referendum filings are not submitted electronically.

The shoestring budget does not include a $15,000 in-kind donation from David Dan, a project manager with Hagerstown-based High Rock Studios. Dan used his computer programming skill to help create a sophisticated website where Marylanders who opposed to the law could download their own petition forms.

The web tool walks users though the multistep process of filling out and submitting a petition form. It also allows Marylanders to check their names against the voter registration database, reducing errors since names must match perfectly inorder to be valid.
Posted by Annie Linskey at 3:34 PM | | Comments (4)
Categories: Immigration


If only government was run this efficiently and frugally.

If only the rest of our government was run this frugally and efficiently...

Very good point, Nicky.

Perhaps the best way to do that would be to force all politicians to pay out of pocket for the first part of any project, and only get reimbursed if their efforts are successful, as was the case here.

Nice to see a lot of hard work by our elected officials can allow a democratic out come over an edict by the govenor.

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About the bloggers
Annie Linskey covers state politics and government for The Baltimore Sun. Previously, as a City Hall reporter, she wrote about the corruption trial of Mayor Sheila Dixon and kept a close eye on city spending. Originally from Connecticut, Annie has also lived in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where she reported on war crimes tribunals and landmines. She lives in Canton.

John Fritze has covered politics and government at the local, state and federal levels for more than a decade and is now The Baltimore Sun’s Washington correspondent. He previously wrote about Congress for USA TODAY, where he led coverage of the health care overhaul debate and the 2010 election. A native of Albany, N.Y., he currently lives in Montgomery County.

Julie Scharper covers City Hall and Baltimore politics. A native of Baltimore County, she graduated from The Johns Hopkins University in 2001 and spent two years teaching in Honduras before joining The Baltimore Sun. She has followed the Amish community of Nickel Mines, Pa., in the year after a schoolhouse massacre, reported on courts and crime in Anne Arundel County, and chronicled the unique personalities and places of Baltimore City and its surrounding counties.
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