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Kotary far ahead in funds

Super. candidate has 4x as much on hand as opponent; Clarkson's report lands online late

Bethlehem supervisor candidate Kyle Kotary has four times the money on hand as his opponent John Clarkson, who is challenging him in the upcoming Democratic primary.

Candidates are required to file financial disclosures with the state Board of Elections 32 and 11 days prior to Election Day, and reports made before the upcoming Sept. 13 primary show Kotary's campaign with a war chest of $8,581.

Clarkson's disclosure report showed his campaign with $2,075 on hand. That information was filed on the afternoon of Monday, Aug. 15, several days after the deadline set by the Board of Elections. Clarkson provided The Spotlight with copies before they were posted.

Clarkson said there were some difficulties in publishing the report through the Board of Election's filing system. A form was not filled out correctly, he said, and had to be resubmitted. That delay as mail was sent back and forth meant the campaign did not receive the PIN number needed to file the report electronically by the deadline.

There was a delay in getting the PIN, that's all, he said. "We're providing all the information. ... We're filing in accordance with the law."

Kotary said there's been plenty of time for his opponent to get his ducks in a row and called the delay inexcusable.

"I have properly and punctually filed my campaign's public financial statements, I have signed the fair campaign pledge, and I've focused my campaign on my time on the board. ... Unfortunately, my opponent has not done any of that. I can only hope he'll start complying with state election law," said Kotary, adding, "You can't have, 'The dog ate my homework.'"

Due to the sheer number of people running for office every year the Board of Elections leaves reporting in the hands of candidates. Most complaints of impropriety aren't followed up on until after the elections, in part because so many meritless claims are made in the heat of election season.

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