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Past, present county GOP chairs trade blame for party’s financial woes

by George Bennett | June 11th, 2013


Palm Beach County Republican Party Chairman Ira Sabin has laid off the local GOP’s two paid staffers and plans to shutter the party’s headquarters in response to a severe financial shortfall.

Sabin plans to slice the county GOP’s budget from $310,000 to $172,667, according to figures he gave Republican Executive Committee members in advance of Wednesday night’s party meeting.

Sabin laid off executive director Cathy Brandenburg and longtime political director Mark Hoch last week in hopes of saving about $50,000 over the remainder of 2013. Shutting down the office on Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard after Aug. 31 should save more than $16,000 in rent and office supplies, Sabin estimates.

Sabin has also cancelled the party’s planned Lobsterfest, a golf tournament and a “bring your own guns” shooting event — saving more than $30,000 in expenses, but also forgoing whatever revenues those events would have brought in.

Sabin was elected in December after former chairman Sid Dinerstein opted not to seek a sixth two-year term.

Dinerstein put more than $220,000 of his own money into the party between 2008 and 2012. When he left office, the party had only $1,600 in its bank account, Sabin said, while owing Dinerstein $10,000 for money he loaned the party to pay for January’s Lincoln Day dinner at Donald Trump‘s Mar-a-Lago.

“The fact is, he left the party in debt,” Sabin said.

With Dinerstein’s ability to write personal checks, Sabin said, the party relied too much on Dinerstein a few big donors and failed to cultivate a broad base of donors over the years.

“We really had no fundraising,” Sabin said.

Dinerstein offered a different analysis.

“I left the party in great financial condition…At the end of an election, there’s never money in the bank. That’s the purpose of raising the money,” Dinerstein said.

As for the party’s past reliance on Dinerstein’s contributions, Dinerstein said: “Is it an advantage to have a rich guy who can give money? Sure. But if you can’t raise money, don’t run for the job.”

So far this year, the party’s fundraising has fallen short of goals. The Lincoln Day dinner netted $117,667 rather than the $150,000 expected, according to figures Sabin gave REC members.

And the county GOP’s direct-mail fundraising is expected to bring in only $15,000 this year rather than the $50,000 that had been anticipated, Sabin said.

Sabin said he plans to bring in a fundraising chair to spearhead money-raising efforts. He said he has a specific person lined up for the position, but won’t announce who it is until Wednesday.

21 Responses to “Past, present county GOP chairs trade blame for party’s financial woes”

  1. JT Says:

    You need to steal more money like the democrats do..

  2. Gav Says:

    And nothing of value was lost.

  3. WPB resident Says:

    Republican Party “Closed”
    Truly a sign of the times on so many levels.

  4. Dude Says:

    Let’s just close the doors on everything to save money. Maybe outsource even our Government to China if it’s cheaper to make big business thrive more. Yeah, that’s the idea!

  5. don't worry Says:

    Don’t worry about the GOP in Florida. For years now they have controlled the FL legislature and put that evil little bald man in as the Governor. And with less than half the people rgistered as Republicans they are doing something right.

  6. bito63 Says:

    This should be a sign posted on ALL of their offices around the country, Their party is finished, And they know it.

  7. Soylent Green Says:

    Oh no !

    Can’t be !

    Oh my !

    Where O where are Allen West and or Joyce The Pastrami Slinger Kaufman ?


    I would cry but, I can’t spare the moisture…

  9. Infiniteduff Says:

    The picture says it all…a fat old white guy.

  10. Nestor Luis Rivera Says:

    Dear Republican a large amount of money goes to street evry minute evry day to the delincuent hands or terrories, why to worrie we all adults we are the right hands for evry second that money come to are hands, underdog is here, a piano for sale, piano piano a rafle, or a Alaska gabage 85 pounds second place, the other one is growing ect. I am a Republican Member Nunber 321184231. Sincerely,Nestor Luis Rivera P.O Box 937 Belden St NorwalkCt 06852

  11. Susan Says:

    Hey Infiniteduff, good to know that I can say racist things when I see a democrat. Yes, good to know.

  12. Janet M. Says:

    Sabin said: ‘If I’m elected I plan to make Susan Bucher’s life miserable’. How’s that working out for ya Ira? LOL!

  13. booradley Says:

    The unfortunate side to this story is there will be no opposing voice to the predominant party in the county. Democrats and Liberals may think that’s a good idea but think for a moment of what that will produce. Democracy only works when the other voice is heard. Otherwise you have a single party system just like China, Russia, Cuba. Should I go on? Be careful of what you ask for, you just may get it.

  14. @ booradley Says:

    We already have one part rule in Florida. The Republicans. They have had the legislature and the Gov office for over ten years.

  15. Nestor Luis Rivera Says:

    Dear Republicans, a Ridgefield Ct Policeman Romero did kill Republican Veteran John Valluzzo in Ridgefield Ct in cold blood. Nestor Luis Rivera P.O Box 937 Belden St Norwalk Ct 06852

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