York County judge candidates raise $164K during election


The three remaining candidates running for a seat on the York County Court of Common Pleas bench raised a combined $163,951 and spent $140,362 this election, according to campaign finance reports.

Chris Menges' committee, Citizens for Judge Menges, led the pack, raising $102,250 and spending $79,889 over the course of the election.

Menges is followed by Kathleen Prendergast, whose committee, People for Kathleen Prendergast, raised $36,376 and spent $35,869. Mike Flannelly's committee, Flannelly for Judge Committee, raised $25,325 and spent $24,064, according to reports filed with the Pennsylvania Department of State.

There are two open seats on the bench.

Cycle: Reports filed for the latest reporting cycle nearly mirror the totals for the election. The latest reports were due Friday.

Menges raised $29,442 and spent $7,081 between the beginning of June and the middle of October, his committee's report shows.

The 64-year-old attorney with Trinity Law in York City was his campaign's largest donor, giving $25,000 during the most recent cycle.

Prendergast, 52, raised $6,400 and spent $4,904 in the latest cycle. Her largest donation came from personal injury lawyer Dale E. Anstine, who gave $1,000, according to her campaign's report.

Flannelly's committee's latest report wasn't available through the Department of State.

Reached by phone on Monday, Flannelly, 59, said his campaign didn't raise any money between June and the middle of October but also didn't spend any money.

The candidates: Flannelly, the York County solicitor, received enough votes in the primary election to appear as both a Republican and a Democrat in the upcoming municipal election. He served as a Common Pleas judge for about a year and half after he was appointed to the bench in 2012, but he lost bids for election.

Prendergast, who is a registered Republican, secured enough votes to appear as a Democrat on the ballot in November. She has been practicing law for more than two decades and operates her own law firm in the city.

Menges, who has been an attorney for nearly 40 years, will appear as a Republican on the ballot.

Menges wouldn't be able to serve a full 10-year term since Pennsylvania states judges must retire at the end of the year when they turn 70. However, a measure, House Bill 90, would allow voters to change the state Constitution through a referendum and raise the retirement age to 75.

That bill is in the Senate. Similar bills in the past have not been signed into law.

GOP favored: In Republican-strong York County, candidates covet the GOP ballot, and the Republican candidates usually are elected over those who appear on the Democratic ballot, said G. Terry Madonna, a pollster at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster.

"Typically you get a lot of straight-party tickets cast," he said.

Common Pleas judges are elected to 10-year terms and are paid $176,572 annually.

The municipal election is Tuesday, Nov. 3.

— Reach Greg Gross at

Follow the money

Here's a glimpse of how the campaigns spent money during the campaign finance reporting cycle. Reports were due Friday:

Mike Flannelly:

•Didn't spent any money during the reporting cycle.

Kathleen Prendergast:

•$1,714: Ream Printing for printed materials

•$2,390: MediaOne Pa for newspaper advertising

•$800: York County Republican Committee for fall dinner sponsorship

Chris Menges:

$750: NeFra Communications for billboard advertising

$2,657: NeFra for pads and buttons

$1,500: NeFra for radio advertising

Source: Campaign finance reports

To view the campaign finance reports, visit Click on "campaign finance" on the left, then "online reporting and search" on the right and finally "search reports" on the left.