Not that challengers vying for congressional seats in Utah are poor, but 12 of the 14 who filed financial disclosure forms with the U.S. House clerk would get a pay raise if they are elected.
The forms released last week show that only 3rd District Democrat William Orton and 3rd District Republican Richard Harrington made more in wages last year than the at least $120,700 salary that House members will receive beginning Jan. 1.A yet-to-be-determined cost-of-living increase could push that House salary to around $125,000. House members are currently paid $96,600 - except for a handful such as Rep. Wayne Owens, D-Utah, who refused to accept the last raise (for which he voted) and are still paid $89,500 a year.
Disclosure forms show that salaries of challengers in Utah ranged from more than a quarter-million dollars by Orton to less than $500 by 1st District American Party candidate Reva Marx Wadsworth who listed no financial assets either.
But she may be doing better than many members of her small party because 3rd District American Party candidate Robert J. Smith wrote in a note along with his disclosure, "The most prosperous members of our party . . . are nominated largely because we can afford to pay the filing fee."
Congressional incumbents from Utah released similar disclosure forms two weeks ago. Forms are designed to give voters an idea of a candidate's financial ties and status but require disclosure only within broad ranges. Following are highlights from the challengers' disclosure:
1st District (Now held by Rep. Jim Hansen, R-Utah):
Kenley Brunsdale, Democrat - 1989 joint income with wife: $89,197. Assets (other than personal home): None. Liabilities: None. Positions: Board member, Utah Wildlife Federation.
Dub Lawrence, Republican - 1989 adjusted gross income with wife: $58,980. Assets (other than personal home): None. Liabilities: None. Positions: Davis County commissioner.
Reva Marx Wadsworth, American Party - 1989 income: "Less than $500 a year." Assets (other than personal home): None. Liabilities: None.
2nd District (Now held by Rep. Wayne Owens, D-Utah):
Genevieve Atwood, Republican - Income: Her disclosure form listed joint income with husband of $148,841 to $351,812, but Atwood said her personal adjusted gross income was $109,110 - with $42,803 of that coming in capital gains from cashing in investments to remodel her home. Assets (other than personal home): Disclosure forms said they were between $235,023 and $780,000, but Atwood said her net worth was roughly $825,000. Liabilities: None.
Dan Marriott, Republican - Income: $83,397 to $84,896. Assets (other than personal home): $830,000 to $1.3 million or more. Liabilities: $50,003 to $165,000. Positions: President, Marriott & Co.; general manager of First Tree Partnership; limited partner, Zions Park Partnership.
Eleanor Garcia, Socialist Workers Party - Income: $28,351. Assets (other than personal home): None. Liabilities: None.
Lawrence Rey Topham, Independent Party of Utah - (The party does not sanction Topham). The House clerk's office said it did not receive the required form from Topham, who sent a statement to the Deseret News claiming he was exempt from making any disclosure.
3rd District (held by retiring Rep. Howard Nielson, R-Utah):
Dean Bristow, Republican - Income: $93,778 to $105,797. Assets (other than personal home): $260,089 to $630,000. Liabilities: 15,001 to $50,000. Positions: Owner of his own medical practice; limited partner, Mountain View Medical Office Building; limited partner, Fayetteville Lithotripters, Ltd.; and consultant, The Country Place of Utah.
Steve Densley, Republican - Adjusted gross income with wife: $57,271. Assets (other than personal home): $105,002 to $265,000. Liabilities: $65,002 to $150,000. Positions: Director, Provo/Orem Chamber of Commerce; board member, Utah Valley Metropolitan Development Committee; and officer, National Kidney Foundation of Utah.
Richard R. Harrington, Republican - Income: $127,417. Assets (other than personal home): $200,001 to $505,000. Liabilities: $15,0001 to $50,000.
John L. Harmer, Republican - The U.S. House Clerk did not receive the required form from him.
Brent Morris, Republican - Income: $75,000. Assets (other than personal home): None. Liabilities: None. Positions: Utah County commissioner; board member, Mountain View Hospital.
Karl Snow, Republican - Income: $81,178 to $88,677. Assets (other than personal home): $210,006 to $455,000. Liabilities: $50,001 to $100,000. Positions: assistant vice president, Brigham Young University; president and trustee, Utah Technology Finance Corp.
T. John Baer, Democrat - Income: $17,623. Assets: $182,000. Liabilities: $74,000. Positions: Owner, Baer's Green Lawn.
Bill Orton, Democrat - Income: $258,300 to $278,299. Assets (other than personal home): $820,008 to $1.27 million or more. Liabilities: $150,002 to $350,000.
Robert J. Smith, American Party - Income: $56,091. Assets (other than personal home): $100,003 to $450,000. Liabilities: None. Positions: Co-owner, South Valley Printing Co; owner, American Copy and Lasertype.
Anthony Melvin Dutrow, Socialist Workers Party - The U.S. House clerk did not receive the required form from him.