Patrick Davies tops Vernon municipal election expense list

The third-place finisher in the race for Vernon mayor outspent his competitors combined.

The third-place finisher in the race for Vernon mayor outspent his competitors combined.

Patrick Davies had expenses of $31,208 during the November election, while $19,689 was spent by Rob Sawatzky, who led the polls, and incumbent Wayne Lippert, who came second, had $10,900 in expenses.

“My intention was to get a replacement for the mayor at the time and it happened. If it took $31,000, it was a good deal,” said Davies. “It would have been nice to win. But the success was we got people who had never voted before excited.”

Davies put significant personal resources into his campaign, according to documents filed with the City of Vernon. He contributed $7,639 while there was $5,000 from Latitude Marine which he owns and $5,050 from Naked Media which operates out of his house.

Other donations included $4,000 from Walter Davies, $2,000 from Aldebaran Enterprises and $1,500 from Brad Chapman.

The biggest expenses for Davies were advertising, signs and pamphlets.

“As a businessperson out of nowhere and a young guy, we had to get out there and give everything we had,” said Davies.

Of his $19,689 in expenses, Sawatzky directed most of it to getting the word out through signs and advertising.

“It’s the sad reality that this is what you have to do,” said Sawatzky of the dollars required to launch a campaign.

Sawatzky pumped $13,500 of his own money into his inaugural run for mayor.

“Given that I didn’t have a high profile and business roots, I was OK with picking up the cost,” said Sawatzky.

“I was looking at it as community service.”

Sawatzky received $4,600 in donations worth more than $100 and $408 valued less than $99. His donors included $750 from Lakeside Developments and $500 each from Cecil Schmidt, Victor Cumming and Robert Ross.

Sawatzky says he still doesn’t know who some of his supporters were and those issues were left to his business agent.

“The more independence you can have the better,” he said of serving as mayor.

Like the other mayoralty candidates, Lippert’s spending focused on creating public awareness.

He had $10,850 in contributions over $100 and $50 under $99 in value. Among the donors were $3,000 from Wesbild Holdings, $1,000 from R.L. Walker Contracting and $500 each from Tavistock Properties, Okanagan Spirits and the Vernon Professional Firefighters Association. Documents indicate Lippert provided $100.

Lippert could not be reached for comment.

Of the 15 councillor candidates, Patrick Nicol, who topped the polls, spent $13,233 of his own money. Lily Kerr, who came in 13th, spent the least at $297, with $300 being donated by 1&2 Electric.



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