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Political notebook: Latest campaign finance reports show Hudson off to quick start

By Josh Bergeron
josh.bergeron@salisburypost.com

The more experienced of Rowan County’s two congressmen is off to a fast start in building his war chest for the 2018 campaign.

Campaign finance reports filed last week show Rep. Richard Hudson, R-8, with roughly $500,000 in cash on hand. Meanwhile, Rep. Ted Budd, R-13, has $82,723 in cash on hand.

Hudson’s campaign has now raised more than $300,000 in both quarters of 2017. The latest campaign finance reports from April through June show Hudson’s campaign raised $309,879. His campaign said it had raised more money from North Carolina donors in the first six months of this year than any previous year.

For his part, Hudson said the fundraising success is tied to his work in Congress.

“It shows that the work we are doing to fight for common-sense, conservative values is really resonating with the folks at home, and they believe in our efforts,” he said in an emailed statement.

In the second quarter, political action committees contributed more money to Hudson’s campaign than individuals. However, Hudson’s campaign said the individuals were the most frequent contributors to his campaign during the second quarter. His campaign said 86 percent of his individual contributions came from North Carolina.

Matt Barr, chairman and CEO of Carolina Color, was the lone local resident who contributed to Hudson’s campaign and had an itemized contribution.

Meanwhile, Budd’s campaign raised $107,930.54 during the second quarter. That’s more than he raised in the first quarter.

Like Hudson, political action committees contributed more money to Budd’s campaign during the second quarter than individuals.

Budd had two local, itemized contributions to his campaign: Barr and Dyke Messinger, president of Power Curbers.

Local legislators’ bills become law

Gov. Roy Cooper signed four bills into law this week that were sponsored by local legislators.

Those bills related to handicap parking privileges, light bars on motor vehicles and a firefighter relief fund. The fourth is known as the North Carolina Farm Act of 2017, and Cooper’s signature on the bill upset a farmworker union.

The three noncontroversial bills, which are now law, do the following: allow a licensed physician assistant, nurse practitioner and midwife to certify handicap parking privileges; reduce the number of years a destitute firefighter must serve to receive financial assistance from a local relief fund; and prohibit the use of light bars on public highways.

Former Sen. Andrew Brock was a primary sponsor of the handicap parking privileges bill. Rep. Harry Warren, R-76, was a primary sponsor of the firefighter bill. Sen. Tom McInnis was a primary sponsor of the light bar bill.

Brock was also a primary sponsor of the farm act, which contains a number of agriculture-related provisions. Cooper’s signature upset some because of a provision that prevents agriculture producers from transferring funds to a labor union for the purpose of paying a membership fee.

Tillis issues neutral statement on new health care bill

The U.S. Senate continues to tweak its version of a health care bill, but Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., hasn’t yet taken a position on the measure.

Last week, the Senate released an updated version of its bill and Tillis released a statement about the measure at roughly the same time. For his part, Tillis says he looks forward to reviewing the changes. However, he said improvements had been made.

When another version of the bill was released in June, Tillis issued a similar statement, saying he looked forward to reviewing the bill.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated to correctly locals who gave to Budd’s campaign during the second quarter.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.

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