If politics is a money game, Sheriff Robert Arnold is leading the field as the Aug. 7 election approaches, raising nearly $49,000 this year alone.
Arnold entered the sheriff’s race with $31,133 in the bank and totaled $31,955 in receipts during the first reporting period of the year, according to Election Office documents, listing a personal loan of $20,000. He spent $39,173 over three reporting cycles, including $6,500 with Griffin Strategies.
He netted another $16,831 in receipts for the period from April 28 to June 30 and spent $19,023, reporting $21,721 on hand. He had personal loans totaling $27,500.
From a financial standpoint, Independent candidate Dale Armour, a former TBI agent, has the best shot at unseating Arnold. He started the latest reporting period with $7,363 in the bank and brought in $11,124 in receipts, spending $12,985 during the period. He had $5,502 on hand and loans totaling only $250 at the end of June.
Democratic candidate Bill Kennedy began the reporting period with $1,608 on hand and netted no receipts for the period. He spent $1,324 and had a balance of $284. Kennedy, who left the sheriff’s in 2010 after Arnold took office, had outstanding loans totaling $4,210. He now works as a Lebanon Police officer.
Independent candidate Jim Tramel, a former sheriff’s detective, had $1,932 when the reporting period began and brought in no funds from late April through June. He spend $1,362 during the period and had $569 on hand June 30.
Tramel is in the midst of a lawsuit against the sheriff Rutherford County, contending Arnold fired him in June 2013 after he made it known he was going to run for sheriff.
Mayor Ernest Burgess reported $213,576 in receipts from mid-January to April 26, including $150,000 in personal loans, according to information on file with the Rutherford County Election Office.
Burgess spent a total of $189,785 and has $23,790 on hand, according to records. In the last reporting period, Burgess netted receipts totaling $12,771 and had only $1,067 on hand for the Aug. 7 county general election when he faces two independent candidates, Heather Ann Brown and Teresa St. Clair.
The mayor had an outstanding personal loan of $158,000.
St. Clair reported total receipts of $2,271 and expenses of $1,771 for the period. She had $550 on hand at the end of July. Brown reported total contributions of $132 and had $29 on hand July 30.
Jimmy Evans reported receipts of $61,316 and total disbursements at $40,793. He also loaned his campaign more than $33,000 and had $20,522 on hand as of April 26.
During the latest reporting period, he brought in $29,105 and spent $29,961 and a had zero balance. He reported outstanding loans at $47,961.