Richard Barb Doubles Opponent Brian Veerkamp in Supervisor Fundraising Race
District 3 Supervisor Candidate Richard Barb trumps opponent Brian Veekamp in campaign contribution race. To compound Veerkamp's poor fundraising this period is the fact that he did not raise enough to pay back the loan he made to his own campaign. That may not be a problem for the retired Fire Chief from El Dorado Hills as his plush public pension allows him to stump on the pledge that he will forgo the Supervisor salary if elected.
In the Contributions Period 5/20-9/30, Richard Barb's campaign reported $26,474 to Brian's $12,262. This was reflected in the number of individual contributors listed on the reports as Barb's report was twice as many pages as Veerkamp's.
Required reports also show that Barb's campaign has no loans but Veerkamp has an outstanding loan amount of $17,956.
Although Veerkamp is the presumptive frontrunner, largely related to his brother Doug Veerkamp's name recognition and high regard among the community, Brian has been dogged with a number of negatives. There is an active campaign in El Dorado Hills for the fire board where accusation of bloated spending and lavish pay is central to the debate. This is the Board that oversees the department that Veerkamp was the Chief and retired with a reportedly generous public funded pension of nearly $200,000 a year.
Additionally, Plaintiffs in a pending Federal Lawsuit (NO. CIV. S-10-2152 LKK/DAD) allege that a "hostile work environment was concocted by Veerkamp in retaliation for plaintiffs’ complaints about Veerkamp’s alleged homophobia" while he was Chief of the El Dorado Hills Fire Department. Plaintiffs assert that their due process rights were violated because the pre-termination hearing was "presided over by Veerkamp, who, they say, was biased against them."
Even with the lawsuit and allegations of being an big bureaucracy champion, Veerkamp enjoys popular support from his many years in the community. But that support does not seem to be generating campaign donations or grassroots activism.
Barb’s funding has largely come from the business sector while Veerkamp’s has come from old family connections and labor unions. Barb is the clear leader in grassroots volunteer support as evidenced by hundreds of bumper stickers on local vehicles and almost 1,000 public endorsements, including nearly 150 from individual businesses on his website. During the primary, Barb’s motivated volunteer workforce was large enough to hand address and assemble a district-wide mailing to over 8,000 households in a single evening.
Veerkamp enjoyed an advantage of about 9 percentage points in the Primary election, but insider polling indicates that the lead has evaporated and the race is now neck-in-neck with the momentum going to Richard Barb with less then 30 days to go.
Voters can expect thier mail boxes to be filled with campaign material over the next week as both candidates make last minute pushes.