Candidates in Tuesday’s Vicksburg primary file their first campaign finance reports

Published 9:39 am Thursday, April 27, 2017

If the race for public office depended on the dollars raised and those supporters donating to a campaign, the 2017 municipal election season in Vicksburg would already be closed.

Tuesday marked the first of three election season campaign finance filings with the city of Vicksburg for those candidates participating in Tuesday’s primary election.

Only those candidates who are facing off in Tuesday’s primary election were required to file reports with the city clerk or the Mississippi Secretary of State’s office by 5 p.m. Tuesday.

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In the Democratic primary race for mayor, incumbent George Flaggs Jr., raised nearly $64,000 during the fundraising period, giving him a total raised in 2017 to more than $87,000.

That amount raised is more than 2,000 percent more than the next closest competitor in current Warren County Board of Supervisor Charles Selmon. Prior to Tuesday’s filing deadline, Selmon had raised $4,180.

The other candidate for the Democratic nomination, Mitchell Dent, had raised just $500.

After taking out campaign expenses during the same period, Flaggs maintains a campaign war chest of $45,239.07, while Selmon would have $1,780 in the primary’s final days. Dent appears to have a deficit in his campaign having raised just $500, but spent $2,906.83 in the filing period.
Contributions range wildly

The itemized amounts donated to Flaggs’ campaign range from contributions of $250 to as high as $1,500.

Some of the notable contributors are businesses like Canon Toyota, Vicksburg Ford and Pinnacle Entertainment, the parent company of Ameristar Casino.

Bancorpsouth also made a contribution, as did TanTec and the Ergon State Political Action Committee.

Of the contributions, $51,360.92 was itemized, while an additional $12,347 was not itemized. Any contribution lower than $250 does not have to be itemized.

For Selmon, most of his funds have come from a $3,000 contribution from his wife Fredia Selmon. Ray English contributed $500 to the campaign, while Central Asphalt added a $300 contribution.

Selmon also lists $380 in non-itemized contributions.

As for Dent, the only itemized contribution has come from Enviorsav LLC for $200. He reports another $300 in non-itemized contributions.
You have to spend it

Of the $41,873.69 spent by Flaggs in his re-election campaign, just over 85 percent of the itemized expenditures has been spent in Vicksburg and with Vicksburg vendors.

The largest single expenditure came to Chism Strategies, a campaign firm in Jackson.

Flaggs has also spent $1,589 in specific efforts labeled “GOTV work,” which stands for get out the vote.

Of the $2,400 in expenses registered by Selmon, most appears to have been spent with Captain Jack’s This and That. Selmon reports $1,400 spent at Captain Jack’s.

Another $375 was reportedly spent at Home Depot, while $300 has been spent with Space Age Marketing and Printing in Jackson.

Dent reported spending $2,906.83 during the filing period.

According to the finance report, Dent spent $1,651.56 with Build A Sign, out of Austin, Texas, and another $676.24 with Office Depot in Vicksburg for flyers.

He also reported spending $225 with KSBU for radio ads.
Race for North Ward

In the Democratic primary for the North Ward Alderman seat, incumbent Michael Mayfield reported contributions of $4,800, while his primary challenger John Carroll Sr., reported contributions of $1,270.

In the report, Mayfield is reported to have donated $2,000 of his own money to the campaign and another $1,000 from what is listed as “Mayfield Family.”

Ergon is also listed as donating $500 to Mayfield’s campaign.

As for Carroll, Nash Family Dentistry represented the largest single contributor to the campaign with a $300 contribution.

As for expenditures, Mayfield has spent all of the $3,763.46 reported in the filing with H&M Promotions in Vicksburg.

Carroll spent $1,664.86 over the period, with the largest expense going to A.G.E. Graphics in Long Bottom, Ohio.

He reports having spent $616 with the Ohio-based company for banners and campaign sings.

According to the filings, Mayfield has $1,137.54 on hand, while Carroll is reporting a $394.86 deficit.
Where are the rest?

Only those who are competing in next Tuesday’s primary were required to file. But, that did not stop current State Rep. Alex Monsour, who is vying for the South Ward Alderman office in the June 6 general election from filing a report.

In the filing, Monsour, who is running against incumbent Willis Thompson, report raising $7,450 in campaign contributions, while spending $684.23.

The largest contributors to Monsour’s campaign were Stephen and Lisa Sudderth, Dr. Dan Edney and Mike and Mealnie Roach, who each donated $1,000.

All of the listed expenses were with H&M Promotions in Vicksburg.

About Tim Reeves

Tim Reeves, and his wife Stephanie, are the parents of three children, Sarah Cameron, Clayton and Fin, who all attend school in the Vicksburg Warren School District. The family are members of First Baptist Church Vicksburg. Tim is involved in a number of civic and volunteer organizations including the United Way of West Central Mississippi and serves on the City of Vicksburg's Riverfront Redevelopment Committee.

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