O’Brien holds cash edge

WARREN – The former Mayor of Warren, Michael J. O’Brien, has a sizable cash advantage over the other candidates who have filed so far for the Democratic nomination in the race for the 64th District Ohio House seat.

O’Brien is reporting that in his old account for Warren mayor, he has $18,624 – all of which he says he intends to transfer to an account for the statehouse campaign.

Annual campaign finance reports filed at the Secretary of State’s Office show the other potential candidates, Eugene Mach and Ken MacPherson, both of Warren, have cash balances of $191 and $2,336 heading into the May 6 primary election.

O’Brien reported to the Trumbull County Board of Elections. He has filed paperwork with the state to begin raising and spending money. However, hasn’t transitioned the contributions in the local account to the state.

State Rep. Tom Letson is prohibited from running for the seat again because of term limits. The Democrat has announced his intention to run for the Ohio Supreme Court. However, unlike O’Brien, Letson cannot transition the money he has in his state account for his Supreme Court bid because of court-established rules.

Letson has $1,965 on hand, his report shows.

Meanwhile, the other state representative whose district is in Trumbull County, Democrat Sean O’Brien, has a balance of $25,155.

At the local level, two candidates for probate court judge in Trumbull County have spent thousands of dollars of their own money in the Democratic primary.

Attorney Jim Fredericka spent $8,771 of the $11,500 he loaned the campaign, leaving a cash balance of $2,728. Attorney Patricia Leopardi Knepp, who filed in the race Monday, has $2,046 left of the $10,000 she lent to her campaign.

A potential third candidate, attorney William Flevares, who has announced his intention to run for the seat, did not file a report because he did not open an account until after Dec. 31.

The reports are for July 1 to Dec. 31.

In a race for county commissioner, incumbent Democrat Frank Fuda holds $62,512 in his account, while his challenger, Lisha Pompili-Baumiller, a councilwoman in Hubbard, has $23,982. During the period, Fuda raised and spent $16,385 and $9,755, and Pompili-Baumiller, $17,790 and $8,792.