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Mar 26, 2019 11:25 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

East Hampton GOP Files Overdue Campaign Reports

Mar 26, 2019 12:13 PM

The East Hampton Town Republican Committee filed two overdue campaign contribution disclosures last week, dating back to contributions from the end of last fall’s special election campaign.

The disclosures show only three new contributions from the fall—the largest from the party’s former chairman, Amos Goodman—and a smattering of spending on a single fundraiser and radio advertising.

The filings also show that the party goes into the 2019 election campaign with a little more than $15,000 in the bank as it seeks to find a way to wrest seats on the Town Board and Board of Trustees away from the dominant Democratic Party. The Democrats have at least $40,000 in the bank at the start of the year in a scattering of campaign accounts.

In the final post-election disclosure, which had been due in early December, the party showed just three additional contributions. One of them, $1,500, came from the then-chairman, Mr. Goodman, on October 27. Mr. Goodman would resign his post less than a month later, shortly before being charged with 20 felony counts related to allegedly forged signatures on nominating petitions.

The only other contributions came from Edward Pantzer, $1,000, and Stewart Jones, $100.

The committee fund was debited two charges, $126 and $633, for a fundraiser at the Springs Tavern, and $758 to BOLD Broadcasting, an East Hampton-based marketing firm, for radio ads.

In sum total, the party looks to have spent about $15,000 on its unsuccessful bid to elect Manny Vilar to the Town Board for a one-year term.

More than $4,000 of that spending went to hiring a private detective and attorney to mount a challenge to the petitions submitted by the East Hampton Independence Party nominating David Gruber to also contend in the one-seat election.

Mr. Gruber’s name was, indeed, kept off the ballot by the Republican challenge, after a county judge found that the signatures on some of the petitions nominating him appeared to be forged. Similar apparent forgeries on petitions supporting Mr. Vilar were not challenged legally.

The seat was won by Councilman David Lys with more than 71 percent of the vote. Mr. Vilar is now the Republican Party chairman.

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