More than $1.3 million from the campaign coffers of the late Baltimore County executive Kevin Kamenetz will be donated to local charities that have special significance to the his family.
Kamenetz, 60, died suddenly on May 10 as he was campaigning to become the Democratic Party nominee for governor. His running mate, Valerie Ervin, took over the top spot on the ticket until she dropped out this week.
State law prohibited Ervin from accessing Kamenetz’s large campaign account, and Maryland State Board of Elections rules do not allow for the money to be used for any other candidate in the race.
Charles Klein, Kamenetz’s longtime friend and campaign finance director, consulted with the county executive’s widow, Jill, and the couple’s sons on how to distribute the remaining funds, campaign spokesman Sean Naron said.
The boys, both teenagers, felt strongly that the bulk of the money — $915,000 — should go to support a college scholarship fund for Baltimore County public school students. The nonprofit Central Scholarship has been helping area students pay for college since 1924.
Northwest Hospital in Randallstown is to receive $250,000, while the Maryland Zoo and Hippodrome Foundation — both Baltimore City organizations — are to receive $100,000 each from Kamenetz’s campaign account.
“I want to thank the thousands of Marylanders who supported Kevin and joined in his campaign for governor and we want to express our sincere gratitude for the outpouring of support we have received during this profoundly difficult time,” Jill Kamenetz said in a statement.