Schrader raises far more than rival candidate Feaga in GOP race for executive Leader's spending exceeds opponent's total collected

November 11, 1997|By Craig Timberg | Craig Timberg,SUN STAFF

Howard County Council Chairman Dennis R. Schrader has an early lead in fund-raising in the GOP race for county executive, and has spent more than his primary rival, fellow Councilman Charles C. Feaga, has raised.

Schrader also leads in available cash, with $52,217 to Feaga's $25,203, according to campaign finance reports released yesterday.

County Executive Charles I. Ecker, a Republican incumbent, must step down at the end of his second term next year, leaving Feaga, 65, and Schrader, 44, to battle for the Republican nomination.

There is no Democratic candidate yet for the office.

The Republican race has shaped up as a clash of styles between Feaga, a lifelong Howard farmer wary of modern campaign tools, and Schrader, a University of Maryland Medical Center official who has conducted polls and focus groups for an election nearly a year away.

Despite the differences, the business community -- developers in particular -- opened up their wallets for both men.

Ellicott City developer Patrick McCuan gave $1,000 from his Naples, Fla., company to each candidate on the same day in October.

"I have great respect for both," McCuan said. "They're both close family friends of ours."

For Feaga, who raised $30,665 in the past year, it was his biggest contribution.

Schrader, who raised $76,374, had a dozen contributions as large as $1,000 -- and five larger.

"We've been working hard," Schrader said. "I've got a lot of people I've known in the business community who know and respect me, and want me to get elected."

Schrader also has outspent his rival doing polling, focus groups and setting up an Internet page on the World Wide Web at

His spending tab has reached $35,351, compared with $7,676 for Feaga.

Schrader's spending includes $10,000 for research and consulting by Mason-Dixon Campaign Polling & Strategy of Annapolis, the company of former Howard GOP chairwoman Carol Arscott.

Bethesda fund-raiser Carol L. Hirschburg and her company received $10,104.

By comparison, Feaga paid $75 in salaries, and nothing on research.

"I'm a conservative," Feaga said. "I expect you'll see a lot of that during the campaign. I don't believe in polls."

Schrader's biggest contributors included:

Robert S. Ginsberg, a Reisterstown building contractor, $2,500.

Nazario Development Co., Greenbelt developers, $2,000.

George Vaeth, a Columbia architect, $2,000.

Synthesis Inc., Columbia construction managers, $1,350.

Feaga's biggest contributions included:

McCuan, $1,000.

Members of the Beck family, farmer neighbors of Feaga, $975; $275 came from Peter Beck, his assistant at the County Council.

Marjorie S. Cissel, a Woodbine farmer, $575.

Philip Carroll of historic Doughoregan Manor, also a Feaga neighbor, $500.

Pub Date: 11/11/97

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