With thousands of absentee ballots still uncounted, incumbent Allen County Surveyor Jeff Sorg was leading challenger David P. Devine for the position's Republican nomination by a nearly 2-1 margin Tuesday night.
In a preliminary tally, Sorg received 7,996 votes, or 64.5% to Devine's 4,400 votes, or 35.5%.
The surveyor's office is responsible for reviewing development and stormwater management plans and overseeing the county's public drains and ditches.
There were no Democratic surveyor candidates on the ballot. Democrats have until noon June 30 to fill a ballot vacancy, should no candidate be nominated in the primary.
Both Fort Wayne residents, political newcomer Devine during the campaign chastised Sorg for not being a licensed surveyor – a license is not a job requirement – and for not filing campaign finance forms on time.
Sorg filed a report on contributions May 28, but has yet to file information on expenses, with spaces denoting them on the filed report blank or whited out. The report was due May 15.
Candidates can file an amended report, but late filers are subject to a $50-per-day fine. Sorg has been fined for lateness twice in past elections, paying more than $1,500, Allen County Board of Election records show.
Sorg lists $6,250 in contributions since Jan. 1.
A corporate contribution of $2,000 came from LAB Dev. Corp, a company at 10808 LaCabreah Lane, Fort Wayne, with James Morlan listed as its registered agent in state corporations records. The address is also listed for several active and dissolved companies affiliated with developers Joseph and Eric (Ric) Zehr.
Corporate contributions of $1,000 came from Thomas-Chaffee Dev. LLC and Twin Eagles Development II LLC, both at 9601 Coldwater Road in Fort Wayne. Realtor and developer Mike Thomas is listed as the registered agent of both in state corporations records.
Individual contributions of $750 each came from William G. Etzler of LaOtto and Fort Wayne residents Derek and Dawn Frederickson and Kurt and Faith Heidenreich. All the entries list “engineer” under “occupation.”
Devine lists $1,873 in contributions, of which $1,363 was money he lent to his campaign. Apex Consulting & Surveying, Fort Wayne, where Devine is a senior project engineer, donated $510.