Triangle Politics A weekly look at the local political scene

Maiorano outraised Stagner 2 to 1 in Raleigh council race

From Staff ReportsFebruary 7, 2014 

New Raleigh City Councilman Wayne Maiorano ended last year’s election season with double the campaign donations of his opponent, incumbent Randy Stagner.

The Wake County Board of Elections this week released the final campaign finance reports from October’s municipal election, and they showed Maiorano had received $103,106 in contributions in his successful North Raleigh District A campaign. That’s an unusually high figure for a district council race.

In the final months of the heated race, Maiorano got contributions from some of Wake County’s top Republicans, including former Mayor Tom Fetzer, businessman Bob Luddy, attorney Kieran Shanahan and Wake County Commissioner Paul Coble.

Stagner’s campaign wrapped up with $49,438, including $4,000 from Mayor Nancy McFarlane’s husband, Ron. Stagner ended the election cycle with $7,194 in the bank – not enough to repay the $20,000 he loaned his campaign in June.

Fundraising in the mayoral race was even more lopsided. McFarlane raised $171,665, while her closest opponent, Republican Robert Weltzin, received $9,500.

And the one unopposed candidate last fall – District E incumbent Bonner Gaylord – did most of his fundraising after the election. Records show he received dozens of donations totaling $47,175 in November and December, leading to speculation he could be seeking a higher office.

Gaylord has said he might seek higher office “at some point,” but for now his efforts are aimed at funding policy roundtables and other citizen engagement events.

N.Y. doesn’t hire away Silver

Looks like Raleigh Planning Director Mitchell Silver won’t be leaving to head planning in New York City.

Last month, Newsday reported that Silver had been “identified by knowledgeable sources as the leading candidate to run the planning department under the (Mayor Bill) de Blasio administration.” Other news outlets also listed Silver among the top candidates, citing anonymous sources.

But de Blasio announced Friday that he’s going with an in-house hire: Carl Weisbrod, who’s been serving as co-chair of the new mayor’s transition committee. In a news release, de Blasio praised Weisbrod’s 35 years of public service to the city’s planning commission.

“Carl is a quintessential New Yorker,” de Blasio said in the release.

Silver is also no stranger to New York City. His resume includes time as a policy and planning director for the city as well as principal of a planning firm there. He has repeatedly declined to comment on rumors he was seeking the New York job, but he took to Twitter immediately after Friday’s announcement to congratulate Weisbrod.

Moore to enter Wake clerk race

Barbara Moore, executive director of the N.C. Conference of Clerks of Superior Court, announced Friday that she plans to run for Wake County Clerk of Court.

Moore, a registered Republican, said in a statement: “I‘ve spent the last 18 years of my life in public service. I served sheriffs, district attorneys and clerks of superior court unifying their efforts to improve our judicial system. Clerks touch every aspect of the justice system – and keep the wheels of justice turning. I believe my unique background and years of experience dealing with people and our court system is exactly what Wake County needs in our clerk’s office.”

The daughter of a farmer and a teacher, Moore grew up in Eastern North Carolina and graduated from N.C. State with a bachelor’s degree in communication. She is a third-year student at N.C. Central University School of Law.

Lorrin Freeman, the head Wake County clerk for the past eight years and a Democrat, had announced her plans to run for Wake County District Attorney.

Chatham board seeks members

The Chatham County Board of Commissioners has set a Feb. 14 deadline for anyone interested in filling out the term of commissioner Sally Kost, who resigned last month to move to Colorado.

Kost is a Democrat who represented District 1, and anyone seeking to fill her seat must be a Democrat who lives in the district, according to the county.

“We recognize that the Chatham County Democratic Party will be bringing us recommendations of people to fill that seat,” board chairman Walter Petty said in a statement. “However, we are committed to an open process and want to do what we can to make sure anyone who qualifies and is interested knows about this opportunity to serve.”

Kost’s replacement will finish her term, which ends in November. The board asks potential applicants to complete a form expressing their interest by noon on Feb. 14. The form is available online at www.chathamnc.org or can be obtained by by email or hard copy by contacting Debra Henzey at 919-542-8258 or at debra.henzey@chathamnc.org.

Forms received online will be forwarded to the county Democratic Party.

Political events

• Triangle Republican Women meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday at Melo Trattoria & Tapas, 1821 Hillandale Road (Croasdaile Commons shopping center, off Interstate 85) in Durham. Linda Arnold, capital area vice president of the N.C. Federation of Republican Women, will induct 2014 TRW officers and speak on election-year activities. Info: contact.us@durhamgop.com; 919-695-3467.

Compiled by Colin Campbell, Anne Blythe and Richard Stradling.

Got a tip, item or coming event? Fax Triangle Politics at 919-829-4529, or send e-mail to metroeds@newsobserver.com. Send items by noon Thursday.

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