Campaign Finance Reports: although incumbent Montgomery County Commissioner Riley ahead in fundraising, challengers remain competitive

Criminal Defendant Charlie Riley, Precinct 2 County Commissioner.

Magnolia, January 28 – Precinct 2 Montgomery County Commissioner Charlie Riley has raised more funds for his political campaign/criminal defense fund than his two challengers, Brian Dawson and Gregory Parker, who are only raising political campaign contributions and don’t face any criminal indictment like Riley. Riley filed his semi-annual Campaign Finance Report on January 12, 2018, as did Parker, while Dawson filed his four days later on January 16.

As of December 31, 2017, Riley had $88,225.25 in his campaign/legal defense account. During the 6-month period Riley raised $37,570 in campaign contributions but spent $129,313.19.

Most of Riley’s expenditures go towards legal and consulting fees, although on Riley’s January 16 filing he didn’t show payment to his attorneys but rather that he owes his criminal defense lawyers, Schneider & McKinney $53,280. Riley paid Kristin Christ $14,577 during the 6-month period. Christ is Riley’s campaign manager and often appears on social media to attack Riley’s critics without identifying herself as his paid campaign manager. Riley also paid $10,000 to Yates Company for consulting.

Riley’s political/legal defense contributors look like a “who’s who” of Montgomery County vendors. The three largest contributors were Paul Frey of Frey, Inc., $5,000, Scott Meadows, an information technology consultant, $5,000, and Bobby Singhe, of Isani Consultants, $5,000. John Holzwarth, the engineer who duplicates the services of Montgomery County Engineer Mark Mooney on the County’s road bond projects, contributed $1,500 to Riley during the 6-month period.

Longtime Republican activist and businessman Brian Dawson had $24,174.89 in the bank for his campaign as of December 31, 2017. That’s a very healthy amount for a challenger running in a Commissioners Precinct, only one-quarter of the geographic area of the County. Dawson spent $19,714.11 during the six months from July 1, 2017, to December 31, 2017.

Dawson took in $18,290 in political contributions. Unlike Riley, many of Dawson’s contributions were smaller amounts from grassroots supporters. Bob Smith of Montgomery and Huntsville, $2,000, Eric Yollick of The Woodlands, $1,501, William Dillon of Prosper, Texas, $1,000, Nancy Farmer of Magnolia, $1,000, were Dawson’s largest contributors in dollars.

Dawson loaned $20,200 to his own campaign.

Former Comal County Commissioner Gregory Parker raised $34,671 during the reporting period, but $29,000 consisted of in-kind contributions. In an amendment filed January 22 to his Campaign Finance Report, Parker reported $350 in his campaign bank account on December 31. Parker also reported $6,500 in pledges that he has not yet collected.

On Saturday, January 27, Parker held a major fundraiser in Magnolia. During the four day period between January 23 and January 27, Parker raised almost $23,000, according to his campaign.

Parker’s largest monetary contributors during the six month period were Cindy Osburg of Conroe, $500, William Byrd of The Woodlands, $1,000, and Eric Yollick of The Woodlands, $1,501.






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