Campaign finance documents examined, 4 candidates questioned | Local

Primary Election campaigns are in full swing, with thousands of dollars in contributions flowing from individuals, entities and political action committees.

Candidates and committees had a May 23 deadline to file their pre-primary finance reports Monday for school, county and state races. Rapid City’s municipal election campaign finance reports are due May 31. Election day is Tuesday, June 7.

The Journal examined all finance disclosures that have been filed. The examination found questions for the filings of four candidates — Tim Goodwin for Senate District 30, Janyce Hockenbary for Rapid City Area Schools Board of Education Area 6, Ryan Mechaley for Pennington County Sheriff, and David Johnson for Senate District  33.

Mechaley was the only candidate to resolve the questions posed by the Journal.

Tonchi Weaver, a lobbyist and organizer for South Dakota Citizens for Liberty, filed an affidavit of complaint with the Secretary of State and Attorney General’s office making several allegations against Goodwin’s campaign for State Senate. He is challenging Sen. Julie Frye-Mueller for the seat in District 30.

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In the affidavit, Weaver makes 10 claims against Goodwin’s campaign — ranging from not changing his committee from House of Representatives to Senate, fictitious committees on advertisements, misleading voters that Goodwin is an incumbent from the Senate and not the House, publishing endorsements that he gained as a member of the House instead of ones for Senate, and using government resources for campaign purposes.

Goodwin told the Journal Thursday he had just received the complaint, and vowed to resolve any discrepancies or inaccuracies.

“I’ll work in full cooperation with the Secretary of State and/or Attorney General and if there is (sic) any improprieties, I’ll do whatever it takes to clean it up,” Goodwin said.

Hockenbary’s campaign treasurer, Tim Nietz, signed the Local Jurisdictions Campaign Finance Disclosure Report on April 12, 2022, more than a month before the May 23 filing deadline. The Rapid City Area Schools business office confirmed that Hockenbary’s report was filed on May 6, which is more than 20 days prior to the June 7 election.

South Dakota law mandates that reports must include contributions and expenditures “including twenty days prior to the election date.” Because Hockenbary’s disclosure report does not include contributions or expenditures within the 20-day requirement, it is unclear if the report is accurate.

The Journal called Nietz on Thursday, seeking clarification and left a message on his voicemail. The Journal also emailed Nietz and Hockenbary on Thursday seeking a response. Neither Nietz nor Hockenbary have responded.

The Journal reached out to the Secretary of State’s office for election law compliance. Cely Johnson, elections program coordinator, responded and said their office cannot provide legal advice. Johnson did send the Journal a portion of South Dakota law on investigating and prosecution of violations for county and school district office.

“The state’s attorney shall investigate any violation of the provisions in the chapter related to elections for county and school district office,” the passage reads.

Mechaley filled out the incorrect Campaign Finance Disclosure Report. He used the form for state races instead of the report required for local jurisdiction races.

The Journal contacted Mechaley on Thursday about the error. He immediately went to the Pennington County Auditor’s office and filed an amended disclosure report using the correct form. Mechaley thanked the Journal for bringing the clerical error to his attention. No other amendments were necessary for campaign contributions or expenditures.

Johnson filed his Campaign Finance Disclosure Report and in the fields for itemized direct contributions from individuals and direct contributions from in-state political action committees, he typed “N/A – Itemization in Separate Document.”

However, the separate document showing the itemized contributions is not included in his filing on the Secretary of State’s website.

The Journal called and emailed Johnson on Thursday requesting the separate document. He has not yet responded.

Political Action Committees

Several state and local PACs have received donations and then distributed them to candidates. The listing below is in no particular order and will show the name of the PAC, who the treasurer is, money raised, how much money was spent, how much cash is on hand, the top donors, and the top candidates who received funds.

All campaign finance documents are available within this story at

Joshua Muller, $10,000; Friends of John Roberts PAC, $6,000

Ryan Mechaley, $10,000; Kathy Rice, $1,000

PAC – Support Public Education

Treasurer – Sarah Hermsen

Nerdy Nuts, $10,000; Stan Adelstein, $4,000; Jennifer May, $2,000

Jamie Clapham, $9,737.50; Michael Birkeland, $9,737.50

Leeann Rieman, $5,000; Atlantis LLC, $4,000; Deb Baker, $1,500; Steve Kaulkman, $1,500

J.J. Carrell, $4,500; Lindsey Seachris, $4,000; Janyce Hockenbary, $3,000; Gabe Doney, $3,000

PAC – Democracy in Action

Treasurer – Jocelyn Baker

Stanford Adelstein, $1,000; Marilyn Simon, $1,000; Sandra Olson, $500

Jamie Clapham, $1,000; Michael Birkeland, $500; Pat Roseland, $500; Bill Evans, $500

Treasurer – Scott Odenbach

John and Joy Mills, $10,000; Liz May, $10,000

Top candidates/organizations

Conservative Principles PAC, $15,000; Julie Frye-Mueller, $1,000; Jodie Frye, $1,000

PAC – Friends of John Roberts

William Freytag, $10,000; Dev Cor LLC, $1,500; KTM Design Solutions, $1,000

Tim Goodwin, $10,000; J.J. Carrell, $1,000; Jesse Ham, $500

PAC – Citizens for Public Safety

Treasurer – Kyle Halverson

Cash on hand – $18,038.75

Sam Chandler, $8,000; Stephanie Lien D’Urso, $1,500

PAC – Deadwood Tourism PAC

Raised – $0 (has a carryover of $51,476.52)

$1,000 each to numerous state House and state Senate local incumbents

PAC – Black Hills Home Builders Build PAC

Treasurer – Nicole Weimer

Cash on hand – $34,329.37

Numerous donors ranging from a high of $230 to a low of $20

Rachel Dix, $1,000; Janyce Hockenbary, $500; Janette McIntyre, $500; Bill Evans, $500; J.J. Carrell, $500

Area 3 RCAS Board of Education

Candidate – Michael Birkeland

Doug or Melody Birkeland, $1,000; Craig Mount, $1,000

Support Public Education, $9,737.50; South Dakota EPIC, $2,000; Democracy in Action, $500

Gayla and Rich Meyer, $250; Heather Baxter, $250; James Engelbrecht, $200

Free Republic PAC, $3,000; SD RPAC, $1,000

Area 6 RCAS Board of Education

Candidate – Jamie Clapham

Cash on hand – $11,656.66

Craig Mount, $1,000; Larry Teuber, $1,000

Support Public Education, $9,737.50; South Dakota EPIC, $2,000; Democracy in Action, $1,000; SD RPAC, $1,000; South Dakota TIPs, $1,000

Candidate – Janyce Hockenbary

Janyce Hockenbary, $700; Terry Hockenbary, $650; Norman Christopherson, $500; Carol Black, $500; Mario Rangel, $500; Deb Baker, $500

Free Republic PAC, $3,000

Pennington County Sheriff

Candidate – Ryan Mechaley

Michael and Stephanie Durso, $2,000; Andy and Barb LeGare, $1,000; Lisa Lien, $1,000; Jason Johnston, $1,000

Shining Light PAC, $10,000

Candidate – Brian Mueller

Cash on hand – $55,270.03

$2,000 each from Barry Burgess, James Scull, Monica Burgess, Aloysius Rieman, Hani Shafai, Jeff Hoffman

Pennington County Commission, District 1

Julie Mueller, $1,000; Marty Troupe, $1,000

Candidate – Ron Rossknecht

$1,000 each from Elizabeth Lein, Patrick Hall, Hani Shafai, Barbara Shafai, Suzanne Gabrielson, Richard Gabrielson

SD Realtor PAC, $1,000; BIG PAC, $1,000

Candidate – Gerold Herrick

Lance Russell, $200; Paul Nabholz, $200; Mary Herrick, $200

Convention of States South Dakota, $1,000

Hani Shafai, $1,000; James and Sally Sherrer, $500; James Scull, $500

SD Retailers Association, $1,000; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $500; Back to Biz, $500

Susan Henderson, $250; Rick Fox, $250; Jessica Castleberry, $250

SD Realtors PAC, $1,000; Liberty Tree PAC, $500; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $500

Candidate – Patrick Baumann

Paul Gavic, $1,000; Virgene Gavic, $1,000; Arlene Kallis, $1,000

SD Realtors PAC, $1,000; Liberty Tree PAC, $500; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $500

Lisa Gennaro, $12,500; Linda Reteria, $300; Teresa Hisaw-Elmore, $200

Candidate – Julie Frye-Mueller

Cash on hand – $2,790 (Beginning balance of $1,680)

Helen Brogley, $500; Stephanie Lien D’urso, $330; Rollie Noem, $200

SD Action Committee for Rural Electification PAC, $1,000; Liberty Tree PAC, $1,000; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $1,000

Cash on hand – $25,698 (Beginning balance of $310)

James Scull, $1,000; Hani Shafai, $1,000; James Burgess, $1,000

Friends of John Roberts PAC, $10,000; SD Strong Leader PAC, $5,000; Business Innovation Growth PAC, $1,500

Dick Tieszen, $500; Rex and Cindy Haag, $400; Karl Fischer, $300

Business, Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,250; SD Realtors PAC, $1,000; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $1,000

Cash on hand – $13,977 (Beginning balance of $7,964)

James and Mary Scull, $500; Mike and Nancy Statz, $250; Rebecca and Sandy Hale, $200

Business, Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,500; SD Realtors PAC, $1,000; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $1,000

Justin Johnson, $500; Matthew Schweich, $250; Alisha Kolb, $200

Candidate – Janette McIntyre

Janette McIntyre, $2,000; Bill Freytag, $250; John Roberts, $250

SD Acre, $500; Deadwood Tourism $750; and BHHBA Build PAC $500

Cash on hand – $6,747 (Beginning balance of $3,192)

Barbara Lemmon, $800; Tom and Jackie Corr, $500; Craig and Jill Mills, $500

Liberty Tree PAC, $500; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $1,000; Convention of State SD PAC, $1,000

Dean Aurand, $4,000; Jeff Boerger, $1,000; Mark Bonke, $750

Business Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,250; Back to Biz, $1,000; SD Retailers Assoc. PAC, $500

Larry Massie, $2,000; Debbie Long, $1,000; Stanford Adelstein, $1,000

Business Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,250; Back to Biz, $1,000; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $1,000

Candidate – David Johnson

Cash on hand – $7,213 (Beginning balance of $11,092)

Separate attachment with individual donors not listed on Secretary of State website

Separate attachment with PAC donors not listed on Secretary of State website

Cash on hand – $11,035 (Beginning balance of $125)

Craig and Jill Mills, $1,000; Andy Legere, $800; Deanna Beckett, $500

Liberty Tree PAC, $500; Convention of States SD PAC, $6,000

Cash on hand – $1,971 (Beginning balance of $140)

Eva Frye, $550; Ron and Cheri Loftus, $500; John Bradsky, $250

Liberty Tree PAC, $1,000; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $500

Cash on hand – $5,002 (Beginning balance of $4,263)

Hani Shafai, $1,000; James and Mary Scull, $500; Verne Goodsell, $500

Business Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,500; SD Educators Political Involvement Committee (Epic), $1,000; SD RPAC $1,000

Cash on hand – $10,213 (Beginning balance of $1,122)

Matthew Konenkamp, $1,000; Gil Moyle, $1,000; Clark Moyle, $1,000

Business Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,500; Deadwood Tourism PAC $1,000; SD RPAC, $1,000

Cash on hand – $5,604 (Beginning balance of $2,811)

C&S Electronics, $1,000; Barb Landers, $1,000; Cloud 9, $1,000

Candidate – Tony Randolph

Cash on hand – $773 (Beginning balance of $114)

Larry and Melodie Paulsen, $1,000; Blaine Cambell, $1,000; Barb Landers, $500

Lee Schoenbeck, $1,000; Hani Shafi, $1,000; Thomas Bradsky, $500

Business Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,250; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $1,000; Dakota Leadership PAC, $500

Candidate – Elizabeth Regalado

Katie Banaszak, $1,000; Ryan Kolbeck, $500; Gregory Sperlich, $300

Schoenbeck for Senate, $1,000; Business, Innovation and Growth PAC, $1,250; Deadwood Tourism PAC, $1,000

Contact Nathan Thompson at [email protected].

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