Spending tops $61K in sheriff’s race

Published 2:25 am Thursday, July 12, 2018

Candidates in next week’s Republican runoff for sheriff of Covington County reported more than $11,000 in campaign contributions in the month of June, campaign finance reports show.

Going in to the June 5 primary, the three candidates in the race had spent almost $55,000. In that race, incumbent Dennis Meeks led his two challengers, receiving 41.5 percent of the votes, and followed by Blake Turman, who got 38.6 percent of the votes. The third candidate, Nickey Carnley, who received 19.9 percent of the votes, immediately endorsed Turman.

Campaign finance reports filed at the end of June show that Meeks’ campaign received another $8,850 in contributions. He received a $5,000 contribution from his wife, Altheia Meeks. Other contributions included Nathaniel Waller of Mobile, $500; LBB, LCC of Opp, $500; Randy Rushton, $250; Harper Electric Construction, $1,000; and Palmer and Sons Collision Center, $1,000.

Turman’s campaign received an additional $2,800 in June, including non-itemized cash contributions totaling $1,100;

George and Neva Pierce of Panama City, $250; Palmer and Sons Collision Center, $1,000; Deborah T. Cole, $250; and Shirley Watts, $200.

Prior to the June 5 primary, the three campaigns had spent a total of $54,446. The expenditures reported by Meeks and Turman in June brought the total spent in the sheriff’s through the end of June to $61,033.

The runoff is set for Tuesday, July 17. Polls are open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 8:30 a.m. The story originally included a contribution of $300 from the Covington County Incident Response Team to Meeks’ campaign, which was listed on the finance reports filed in the Secretary of State’s office. Meeks said the $300 should have been listed as a contribution his campaign made to the IRT. The campaign finance report is being amended to correct the error.