PORT ANGELES — With the Nov. 6 general election more than four months away, incumbent Clallam County Prosecuting Attorney-Coroner Mark Nichols is winning the race for the biggest war chest over his opponent for the partisan position, former county Treasurer Selinda Barkhuis.
Nichols, completing his first term, has raised $21,680 from 71 contributions, including his own in-kind contribution of $1,360, compared to $600 raised by Barkhuis in two contributions — $500 from Kathryn Grosz of Sequim and $100 of Barkhuis’ own money.
So far Nichols has raised more than any of the candidates for a county office in Clallam and Jefferson counties who filed for the Nov. 6 general election.
All partisan-election candidates will appear on the Aug. 7 primary ballot, which will be mailed to voters July 18.
Nichols, a Republican, and Barkhuis, no party preference, will be on the Clallam County ballot with West End-West Port Angeles-area District 3 candidates Bill Peach, the incumbent Republican; Mike Doherty, Democrat, and Dale Wilson, no party preference.
Nichols’ contributions include $8,000 in $2,000 allotments from his brother and sister-in-law, Robert and Rebecca Nichols, of Chevy Chase, Md., and parents, Douglas and Merike Nichols, of Seattle.
Sixteen of Nichols’ top 45 contributors are from Clallam County, the rest being from outside the North Olympic Peninsula.
“Financing a campaign is part of the process, so it becomes helpful to getting your message out,” Nichols said.
“Money is certainly helpful when it comes to campaigning.
“Whether I need to spend the amount that’s been raised as contributions remains to be seen.”
Major portions of $5,071 in expenditures include $1,700 to Laurel Black Design of Port Angeles and $450 for treasurer services to Campaign Compliance Solutions of Puyallup.
Nichols said he is mainly an administrator of the prosecuting attorney’s office. As coroner, he said he focuses on advancing public health matters, and has compiled detailed data on the county’s growing suicide rate.
Barkhuis, a nonpracticing licensed attorney, was elected county treasurer in 2010 and was re-elected in 2014 without opposition.
She resigned her position in December 2017 with a year left on her four-year term, citing work-related stress that she said was caused in part by Nichols.
She said Friday she has been working on personal issues.
“There are personal things going on, not health-related, just personal, that are keeping me busy right now.
“It’s something I should be done with fairly soon, and then I can spend more time on the campaign.”
Nichols sued Barkhuis in county Superior Court while she was treasurer in 2016 in a public records lawsuit involving the Peninsula Daily News.
The lawsuit was dismissed at the county commissioners’ request.
“I was in an impossible position that was stressing me out,” she said. She said that she faced roadblocks while trying to fulfill her oath of office and constantly had to defend her position.
“I am not in that same state of mind because I have removed myself from that impossible situation,” she said. “As prosecutor, I would be in a position to impact change, and that’s why I’m running for prosecutor.”
Barkhuis has called Nichols a “rat” on her website.
“Calling him a rat was the most charitable statement I could come up with, and I actually stand by it,” she said Friday.
Nichols said in response Friday: “I’m going to be running a campaign that focuses on the issues.”
Barkhuis was not concerned about the disparity in contributions in the race, saying voters will have a choice between two known candidates.
“It’s still in the early days,” she said. “Frankly, I am mostly running on my existing record, and I like to think people know me, they know what I’ve done as treasurer.
“I like to think the voters of Clallam County will not base their decision on who raises the most money and has the most signs.”
No contributions or other financial reports had been filed in contested races as of Friday for Bill Peach and Dale Wilson, running for county commissioner District 3, incumbent Sheriff Bill Benedict; Dave Neupert and Pam Lindquist, running for Port Angeles-area District Court 1 judge or for incumbent Clallam County Public Utility District, District 3 Commissioner Ted Simpson.
Candidates who spend under $5,000 do not report contributions or expenditures.
Below is a list of contributions of $100 or more, as of Friday, for all Clallam County candidates in contested races who have filed information.
Mark Nichols, incumbent
Total contributions, including in-kind: $21,680.
In-kind: $1,360, Mark Nichols, Port Angeles.
$2,000: Douglas Nichols, Merike Nichols, Seattle; Rebecca Nichols, Robert Nichols, Chevy Chase, Md.
$1,000: Moya Skillman, Medina; Shelton E. Griffin, Jr., Raleigh, N.C.
$750: Taylor Griffin, Raleigh, N.C.
$500: Richard Erickson, Mary Irwin, Port Angeles; Michael Toner, Tony Fratto, Washington, D.C.; Rob Engstrom, Alexandria, Va.; David Thomas, Chevy Chase, Md.; Jim Coleman, Brentwood, Tenn.
$260: Jan Jendrickson, Ken Hendrickson, Port Angeles.
$250: Patty Rosand, John Brewer, Port Angeles; Matthew Rhoades, Matthew McDonald, Washington, D.C.; Courtenay Griffin, Wilson, N.C.; David Hirschmann, Jennifer Adams, Alexandria, Va; Lynn Bradley, Steve Brunette, Seattle; John Collingwood, Chantilly, Va; Danny Korengold, Bridget Overcash, Chevy Chase, Md.
$200: Bertha Cooper, Sequim; Doc Reiss, Paul Martin, Port Angeles.
$100: Linda Willard, Susan Neely, Charles Abell, Chevy Chase, Md.; Kenneth Larish, Nashville, Tenn.; Danetta Rutten, Bruce O’Rourke, Jason Ray, Port Angeles; Peter Heisel, Andre Baritelle, Sequim; Phoebe Moore, Thomas Maider, Seattle; Tim Fletcher, Forks; Tif Ray, Kenmore.
Total cash contributions: $600.
$500: Kathryn Grosz, Sequim.
$100: Selinda Barkhuis, Port Angeles.
Department of Community Development Director
Total cash contributions and loans: $6,995.
$4,995: Julieanna Gardiner, Port Angeles.
Mary Ellen Winborn, incumbent
Total cash contributions, including campaign starting balance: $3,170.
Campaign starting balance: $795.
$1,000: Barbara Maxwell.
$250: Mark Urnes, Port Angeles.
$200: Gail Spurr, Jerolyn Coen, Port Angeles; Kathryn Gross, Sequim.
$175: Robert Lynette, Sequim.
$100: Suzanne Corso, Constance Thorson, Port Angeles.
Clallam County Commissioner, District 3
Total cash contributions and loans: $1,601.
$100: Malcolm Dudley, Cosette Dudley, Atherton, Calif.; Brian Grad, Sequim; Frank Cavanaugh, Port Angeles.
Total cash contributions: $4,450.
$3,000: James McLaughlin, Port Angeles, $3,000.
$1,000: Stanley Becker, Lake Mary, Fla.
$350: Randell Braun, Spanish Fort., Ala.
$100: Gordon Arkin, Maitland, Fla.
Port Angeles-area Clallam County District Court 1
Total cash contributions and loans: $1,500.
$500: Suzanne Hayden, Port Angeles
Clallam Public Utility District, District 3 commissioner
Total cash contributions, including starting balance, and in-kind contributions: $1,837
In-kind: $381, including $356, James Waddell, Port Angeles
Starting balance: $57
$500: Robert R. Vreeland, Port Angeles.
$356: James Waddell, Port Angeles.
$250: Marie Grad, Brian Grad, Sequim.
$200: Janet Marx, Port Angeles.
$100: Paul Forrest, Port Angeles.
Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at [email protected].