A little more than a week before voters can begin casting ballots, new campaign finance reports show Lee Brand continuing to raise more money than Henry R. Perea in the Fresno mayor’s race.
Brand, a Fresno City councilman, raised $219,610 from July 1 to Sept. 24. During that same time, Perea, a Fresno County supervisor, raised $172,375.
“We’re still out collecting on money,” Brand said, noting contributions have continued to come in after the Sept. 24 filing deadline. “We’re definitely ahead of (Perea) in the fundraising part of it.”
Perea, however, says he is confident that he will have enough cash to run the campaign he envisions.
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“Certainly, we have a plan,” Perea said. “We have a campaign strategy, and we have money attached to that, and we’re right where we need to be to get our message out.”
We’re right where we need to be to get our message out.
Fresno mayoral candidate Henry R. Perea
Five people initially vied to replace current Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, who is termed out at the end of the year. In the June primary, Perea finished first with 44.7 percent of the vote to Brand’s 30.8 percent. As the top two finishers, they moved on to the November general election. The other three candidates were eliminated from contention.
From the mid-February start of fundraising to June 30, Brand raised $294,912. He also moved $143,276 into his mayoral campaign account, most of it from his 2012 council re-election campaign. Brand also loaned his campaign $100,000 – the maximum allowable. He spent all but around $49,000 of that ahead of the June primary election.
In all, and counting the loan to his campaign, Brand has raised $757,798 for his mayoral run.
Since the June primary, he has spent $109,011 and has $164,798 left in his campaign account, though he also has $5,300 in unpaid bills.
From mid-February – which is when candidates can legally start raising campaign cash under city of Fresno rules – Perea raised approximately $277,000, and also transferred around $87,000 from his county supervisor account, most of it raised last year. He had a bit more than $41,000 left in his account, after unpaid bills were taken into account, on June 30.
In total, Perea has raised close to $540,000 to date.
Since the June primary, he has spent $96,044 and has $144,495 left in his campaign account, though he also has $22,000 in unpaid bills. Like Brand, Perea also is continuing to collect cash.
We’re still out collecting on money.
Fresno mayoral candidate Lee Brand
Many of Perea’s and Brand’s supporters before the June primary have continued their financial support for the general election. Individual donors are free to give up to $4,200 per election – which means those who contributed $4,200 before the primary can give another $4,200 for the general election. Organizations can give more than that.
For instance, Brand got $4,200 from developer Richard Spencer, who also gave that amount in the primary. Fresno developer Ed Kashian did the same for Perea.
Both candidates also attracted new donors. Perea, for instance, received $4,200 from Gary Bruno, president of G.L. Bruno Associates, a development and construction firm. He didn’t give to Perea in the primary. Brand got $2,500 from OK Produce, which didn’t donate to him in the primary.
The two candidates likely will spend the money on television and radio ads, direct mail, and also to pay campaign walkers, among other things.
They’re also continuing to raise money. Perea says he has raised “another 30 or 40 grand this week” after the Sept. 24 end of the reporting period.
Brand also said he has raised money and plans to use it to “work this whole city.”
There will be one more financial update, which covers the period from Sept. 25 to Oct. 22. Those reports will be public near the end of October.
Fresno mayoral fundraising
For the period from July 1 to Sept. 24
Cash on hand
Henry R. Perea
Source: City of Fresno campaign finance records
Keys to Nov. 8 general election
Last day to register: Monday, Oct. 24
Vote by mail: Period to vote opens Monday, Oct. 10
Last day to request vote-by-mail ballot: Tuesday, Nov. 1
Voter Guide: Learn more about the candidates by checking out The Bee’s online voter guide, fblinks.com/vguide