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ARTESIA : City Hall Number on Campaign Flyer Assailed

March 17, 1994|GREG MILLER

Two City Council candidates are complaining about a campaign flyer, distributed by the mayor and another incumbent, that lists the City Hall phone number to call for additional information.

Challengers Tim Kelemen and John Lyon said that by listing the City Hall phone number, Mayor James A. Van Horn Jr. and Councilwoman Mary Alyce Soares have essentially required city workers to handle campaign calls. "I'm paying for (the mayor's) secretaries to answer his phones for his reelection," Kelemen said.

The incumbents say the charges are simply a campaign maneuver by desperate opponents.

Van Horn and Soares, whose seats are on the April 12 ballot, recently distributed flyers listing their political accomplishments over the past four years. The flyer invites residents to "call us with any questions," and lists the City Hall phone number.

Soares said the phone number was offered so citizens could find out more about the programs described on the flyer. Van Horn said suggestions of impropriety "just show the other side is losing."

Sylvia Ray, a city secretary, said she had received two flyer-related telephone calls and had received one check made out to Van Horn's campaign.

Kelemen acknowledged the $10 check was delivered by one of his supporters. Van Horn said it was the first campaign contribution he has ever received at City Hall, and added that if the check is indeed from a Kelemen supporter, "It'll be in two pieces."

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