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Jo Clifton is the Politics Editor for the Austin Monitor.
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Tuesday, October 7, 2014 by Jo Clifton
Council candidates file campaign financial reports
(Monday was the deadline for all 78 candidates for Austin City Council to file their 30-day-out Contribution and Expenditure Reports with the City Clerk’s office. Here is a summary from the mayor’s race and all 10 Council districts. To save space, some candidates who did not raise significant amounts are not listed. Tyler Whitson and Mark Richardson contributed to this report.)
Mayoral candidate Steve Adler reported Monday that he had raised about $203,000 during the latest reporting period, nearly twice as much as opponents Mayor Pro Tem Sheryl Cole and Council Member Mike Martinez.
Adler also reported spending more than $492,000. His campaign manager, Jim Wick, told the Austin Monitor that the campaign had spent $150,000 on a TV ad buy and $40,000 on direct mail. In addition, he said the money was spent on polling, staff salaries and consulting fees.
Adler loaned his campaign $102,000 during the reporting period that ended Sept. 30, while Martinez loaned his campaign only $25,000. But Adler had only $101,408. remaining in the bank.
The Martinez campaign reported raising more than $86,000 and spending about $131,000. Cole, by contrast, raised nearly $113,000 but spent only about $26,000. She still has $176,000 on hand. Martinez reported that he about $102,000 in the bank.
So Cole and Martinez will probably pay more for their TV advertising because they did not buy it early, unless, of course, they decide not to advertise that way.
But for Adler that advertising is critical. As Wick pointed out, this is the fourth campaign for both Martinez and Cole. In addition, he said there could be 250,000 voters for this campaign.
“In 2012, Lee Leffingwell spent $6 per voter and if you’re projecting 250,000 voters at $3 per voter …” that equals $750,000.
A former firefighter, Martinez reported receiving money from the Austin Firefighters PAC and AFSCME. Martinez’ campaign manager Bo Delp said Martinez had received contributions from 465 contributors on the latest report.
Cole received contributions from about 480 couples and individuals and Adler received contributions from about 900 individuals during the same time period. Wick said the Adler campaign had about 2500 donors altogether.
Wick said Adler had decided early on that he would not accept money from political action committees. He said that they intended to frame their check from the Austin Police Association PAC. He added that they would return the check they received from the Stonewall Democrats, although he would like to keep it.
Martinez reported that he has two bundlers, attorney Ryan Runkle and Amanda DeAngelis, executive director of the American Council of Engineering Companies of Central Texas. Together, the two raised less than $6,000 for this reporting period. Cole and Adler do not have bundlers.
Others in this race include Todd Phelps, Ronald Culver, Randall Stevens, David Orshalick, and Mary Catherine Krenek.
District 1 is the city’s only opportunity district for African-Americans. Hispanics make up 43.2 percent, African-Americans only 28.2 percent and whites 23.3 percent. District 1 is one of the largest districts by area, bounded by Interstate 35, with Pflugerville on the north, SH 130 on the east and reaching down into the eastern parts of downtown and the University of Texas campus. It includes a variety of neighborhoods, such as Copperfield, Harris Branch, University Hills, Colony Park and Rosewood.
Ora Houston is by far the District 1 fundraising leader, showing $24,692 in contributions, with $27,155 in expenses and $27,912 cash on hand. Prominent donors to her campaign include AFSCME, Austin Board of Realtors PAC, the Austin Firefighters PAC, Austin/Travis County EMS Employee Association PAC, the National Association of Social Workers PAC and the Stonewall Democrats.
Andrew Bucknall reports contributions of $1,728, expenses of $4,010 and $1,270 cash on hand.
Dewayne Lofton’s report shows $9,020 in contributions, $19,718 in expenses and $9,155 cash on hand. Lofton loaned his campaign $10,000.
Michael Cargill reports $1,505 in contributions, with $958 in expenses and $1,468 in cash on hand.
In District 2, Delia Garza appeared to lead in cash-on-hand, though this does not take into account the campaign finance reports for Edward “Wally” Reyes, which the Office of the City Clerk did not post to its website Monday. Nor was there a report from Mike Owen.
Garza reported $13,351 in cash-on-hand, $20,197 in contributions, $19,932 in expenditures. She loaned her campaign $5,025 .
John Sheppard reported $470 in cash-on-hand, $575 in contributions, $1,605 in expenditures. He loaned his campaign $1,500 .
In July, Reyes reported $202 in cash-on-hand, $1,002 in contributions, $800 in expenditures and no outstanding loans.
District 3 is spread across three distinct parts of the city — Central East Austin, Riverside and Far South Austin. It is 61 percent Hispanic, an opportunity district. District 3 is the poorest in the city, with a median family income of just $35,000. It also has the second-highest rate of poverty among the districts at 34.4 percent. Only 26 percent of homes are owner-occupied.
Shaun Ireland reported $845 in contributions, $4,347 in expenses and $4,060 cash on hand. Ireland loaned his campaign $10,970.
Fred McGee reported $2,295 in contributions, expenses of $10,321 and $4,482 cash on hand.
José Valera reported $19,404 in contributions, $13,310 in expenses, with $22,099 cash on hand. Valera loaned his campaign $10,025. Prominent donors include the Austin Firefighters PAC and the Texas Democratic Party.
Susana Almanza reported $7,995 in contributions, $3,891 in expenses and $11,379 cash on hand. She received contributions from both the development community, including developer Perry Lorenz and attorney Nikelle Mead, as well as environmental leaders Bill Bunch and Robin Schneider.
Sabino ‘Pio’ Renteria reported $3,630 in contributions, with $1,737 in expenses and $1,907 cash on hand. Prominent donors included Perry Lorenz, State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez, The Stonewall Democrats and AFSCME.
Julian Limon Fernandez reported $3,513 in contributions, $4,180 in expenses and $598 cash on hand.
District 4 spans parts of north Austin, bordered by Lamar Boulevard and US 183 on the west, Cameron Road on the east, 51st Street on the south and Braker Lane on the north. It is another opportunity district, with 65 percent Hispanics, 21 percent Anglos and 9.5 percent African-Americans. It has a median family income of about $36,000 a year and 70 percent of homes are rented.
Greg Casar reports $45,513 in contributions, with expenses totaling $30,617 and $43,924 cash on hand. Prominent donors included AFCSME, Austin Board of Realtors PAC, Planning Commission Chair Danette Chimenti, Zero Waste Advisory Commission Chair Rick Cofer, Education Austin PAC, Heavy Construction Laborers Union PAC, IBEW PAC, former Council Member Jennifer Kim, environmentalist Robin Schneider, Texas State Building Trades COPE and number of other out-of-town union PACs.
Katrina Daniel reported $23,534 in contributions, with expenses of $19,052 and $13,747 cash on hand. Prominent donors include the Austin Police PAC and Stonewall Democrats.
Laura Pressley reported $27,272 in contributions, $35,930 in expenses and $26,974 cash on hand. Pressley loaned her campaign $22,000. Prominent donors include former Travis County Judge Bill Aleshire and Board of Adjustment chair Jeff Jack.
Seven newcomers are running for the District 5 seat on the City Council. All but one of them filed the required contribution and expenditure reports Monday, with former State Rep. Ann Kitchen far ahead of the others in fundraising.
Kitchen, a Democrat, has loaned her campaign $38,200 and raised more than $37,000. As of the end of September, her bank account stood at $45,424.
Behind Kitchen in the race are Dan Buda, also a Democrat and Republican Mike Rodriguez. Buda loaned his campaign $5,100 and raised nearly $7,000. He reported a little more than $15,000 in the bank in his report Monday.
Rodriguez loaned his campaign $10,000 and raised $6,740. He reported that he was maintaining $12,704 at the end of the reporting period.
Dave Floyd reported contributions totaling $8,935 and expenditures of $7,274. He had just $1,660 in the bank at the end of September. Jason Denny reported raising $3,380 and spending $3,000. He indicated his bank account was at $432.18 as of the end of September. CarolAnneRose Kennedy apparently did not file a report by 5 p.m. Monday since it did not appear on the City Clerk’s website.
In District 6, Jay Wiley led all other candidates in cash-on-hand, reporting $40,623. He also reported $14,195 in contributions, $11,529 in expenditures and $32,271 in loans he made to the campaign.
Matt Stillwell came in second in cash-on-hand, reporting $15,494 with no outstanding loans. He reported $22,304 in contributions and $11,295 in expenditures.
Other notable District 6 candidates who reported include Jimmy Flannigan, Don Zimmerman and Lloyd “Pete” Phillips.
Flannigan reported $9,429 in cash-on-hand, $13,217 in contributions, $20,306 in expenditures and $150 in outstanding loans.
Zimmerman reported $7,068 in cash-on-hand, $6,503 in contributions, $19,435 in expenditures and $20,000 in outstanding loans.
Phillips reported $8,311 in cash-on-hand, $9,230 in contributions, $12,142 in expenditures and $4,581 in personal loans to the campaign.
District 7 includes parts of central and north Austin including the Crestview, Allandale and Brentwood neighborhoods along with the Gracywoods, Milwood and Preston Oaks neighborhoods. The population is 57.6 percent Anglo, 22.4 percent Hispanic and 9.6 percent Asian-American. The median family income is $74,000
Jeb Boyt reported $11,636 in contributions, expenses of $27,662 and cash on hand of $10, 302. Boyt loaned his campaign $10,025.
Melissa Zone reported contributions of $5,242 with $8,360 in expenses and $9,294 cash on hand. Prominent donors include attorney and Zero Waste Advisory Commission chair Rick Cofer, water developer Pix Howell, along with Stonewall Democrats, IBEW PAC and the Austin Police PAC.
Jimmy Paver reports $20,120 in contributions, $22,517 expenses and $38,212 cash on hand. Paver loaned his campaign $40,000.
Leslie Pool reported $21,295 in contributions, $14,730 in expenses and $48,981 cash on hand. Pool loaned her campaign $40,000. Prominent contributors included former Travis County Judge Bill Aleshire, AFSCME, Planning Commission chair Danette Chimenti, activist Brian Rodgers and Travis County Commissioner candidate Brigid Shea
Ed English reported $6,809 in contributions, $10,718 in expenses, with $5,320 cash on hand.
In District 8, Becky Bray led in cash-on-hand, reporting $86,120. She also reported $31,995 in contributions, more than $12,000 in expenditures and $50,000 in loans she made to the campaign.
Ellen Troxclair followed with $80,120 in cash-on-hand, $29,393 in contributions, $14,148 in expenditures. She loaned her campaign $55,000.
Eliza May came in third place, reporting $40,617 in cash-on-hand, $15,485 in contributions, $12,271 in expenditures and $24,000 outstanding loans.
Darrell Pierce reported $25,863 in cash-on-hand, $32,896 in contributions, $30,905 in expenditures and $2,500 in outstanding loans.
Ed Scruggs reported $24,253 in cash-on-hand, $5,286 in contributions, $14,581 in expenditures. He loaned the campaign $26,264.
District 9, which stretches from Oltorf on the South to 51st Street on the north and from MoPac on the West to past I-35 on the east side. It is a predominantly Anglo district, and includes downtown, University area and numerous comfortable neighborhoods. These include Bouldin and Travis Heights on the south side and Cherrywood and Mueller to the north and east.
Council Members Kathie Tovo and Chris Riley, who face each other and a candidate with little publicity and even less money, are heading into the final days of their race for the District 9 seat with roughly similar bankrolls.
Riley reported raising close to $50,000 in Monday’s filing and Tovo reported raising a little less than $46,000. Tovo has about $65,000 cash on hand, and Riley has about $58,000.
According to her report, Tovo’s campaign now owes her nearly $142,000. Riley’s campaign owes him only $25,000.
Tovo had loaned herself substantial funds during her first race in 2011 and at the beginning of the year her campaign still owed her more than $61,000. Council candidates are not allowed to raise money once they take office.
Each of these candidates has loyal constituencies and it will be hard work and turnout, not money, that will decide this race.
Erin McGann, the non-incumbent in the race, reported raising $6,130 and spending more than $8,000. She has also loaned her campaign $5,000 and has about $4,300 remaining. The most notable names on her list of contributors are anti-rail warrior Jim Skaggs and his wife, Betty, who contributed $350 each.
District 10 encompasses the west side of Austin, including neighborhoods such as Tarrytown, Northwest Hills, Rosedale, Jester Estates and Great Hills. It is 78.3 percent white, 9.3 percent Hispanic, 8.6 percent Asian and less than 4 percent black or other races. It is the wealthiest of the 10 districts with a median annual income of $128,000.
Robert Thomas reported contributions of $30,140, expenses of $74,525 and $42,415 cash on hand. Thomas made a $100,000 loan to his campaign. Prominent contributors included the Austin Board of Realtors PAC, the Austin Firefighters PAC, Austin/Travis County EMS Workers PAC, and former Council Members Brewster McCracken and Randi Shade.
Sherri Gallo reported $31,448 in contributions, $16,445 expenses and $42,807 cash on hand.
Mandy Dealey reported $47,519 in contributions, with $57,150 in expenses and $53,184 cash on hand. Dealey loaned her campaign $25,000. Prominent donors include AFSCME, former Lt. Gov. and developer Ben Barnes, Planning Commission Chair Danette Chimenti, activist Shudde Fath and the Texas Democratic Party.
Jason Meeker reported contributions of $11,751, expenses of $17,203 and $6,098 cash on hand.
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Key Players & Topics In This Article
Austin City Council November 2014 Elections: The November 2014 Austin City Council elections marked a shift from an all-at-large City Council to one elected based mostly on geographic districts. The city's Mayor remains elected at-large.