Sunday, August 26, 2007

Quid Pro Quo?

They're a little late to the party, but the O-D notices that Sandy DePerno seems to know who her friends are.

Six of the 10 abstract companies occupying space in the Oneida County Clerk's Office have made donations to Clerk Sandra DePerno's campaign since Jan. 1, 2006, according to the state Board of Elections Web site.

The donations total $1,130 and account for about 5 percent of her total raised — $23,834.

DePerno, who has been clerk since the beginning of the year, recently disclosed she has not been charging abstract companies rent to use space in her office, though the 2007 county budget included $30,000 from the rental fees.

DePerno, a Democrat, has said she will make up the fees elsewhere, but has not said how.

The donations did not impact her decision to stop charging the rental fee, she said.

"No it did not," she said. "I don't think it's an issue."

She did not give a specific reason for not charging rent and said it was a decision made at her discretion.

I'm surprised the O-D hasn't tabulated how many bar members that are practicing real estate attorneys donated as well. Those would be the attorneys, and abstract companies, that make up Ms. DePerno's "advisory committee".