Campaign funding heats up as November approaches

Blankley, Mitchell lead fundraising efforts in respective races

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Marie Blankley’s fundraising in the Gilroy mayoral race outpaced her opponent Reid Lerner, records show.

According to finance data submitted to the Gilroy City Clerk’s Office, Blankley raised $26,153 between July 1 to Sept. 19. 

Lerner, meanwhile, raised $3,540 during the same time period, with $2,630 of that total loaned from his company to his election campaign, records show.

Blankley, who currently sits on the Gilroy City Council, received strong support from a trio of Christopher Ranch family members, according to the Form 460 document filed with the city, with Don, Karen and Bill Christopher each donating $750, the largest amount a Gilroy candidate can receive from a single donor. She also received a number of donations from retired Gilroy residents and various realtors and property managers, among other individuals.

In addition to the $26,153 raised, Blankley transferred the remaining $6,566.42 balance from her 2018 city council campaign into her mayoral committee.

During the time period of the report, Blankley spent $9,403.25. Her largest expenditure was $7,254.57 to Legacy Print of Santa Clara for campaign signs, flyers and mailers.

Lerner reported three contributions on his campaign financial statement: $500 from Joseph Gigantino Jr., the owner of San Jose-based Weights & Bars, $200 from the South County Democratic Club, and $200 from Erik Martin of Tunnel Electric.

Lerner’s company, Reid Lerner Architects, loaned $2,630 to his campaign on Aug. 13.

His two largest expenditures were $1,540 to Gilroy Web Design for website design, and $1,438 to Austin, Texas-based Signs on the Cheap for lawn signs.

Lerner also reported $100 in unitemized payments.

Council race finances

In the five-person race to fill three seats on the Gilroy City Council, candidate Danny Mitchell has raised the most funds, having garnered $24,570 since January. He loaned his campaign $2,000, which is included in the total raised.

Rebeca Armendariz, who has been fundraising since July 2019, has raised $19,994.40, finance documents show. Since May, Zach Hilton has raised $7,445.

Incumbents Carol Marques and Fred Tovar have received $15,204 and $6,725, respectively. Marques began fundraising in January, while Tovar’s earliest contribution is dated July 8.

Throughout his campaign, Mitchell has spent $10,106, with his largest expenditure of $2,665 going to Briana Monaco for website and poster designs.

With $6,743 spent, Armendariz’s largest expenditure was $1,087.50 to signrocket.com, while Hilton, who reported $4,956.20 in total expenditures, paid $2,064.80 to Sacramento-based Firefighters Print & Design for campaign paraphernalia, according to documents submitted to the city.

Marques has spent $8,405.55, with $6,572.60 of that total going to Santa Clara-based Legacy Print for mailers, lawn signs and postage.

Tovar, who loaned $1,400 to his campaign, spent $6,096.61. His largest expenditures were $2,380.40 to Gilroy-based One Life Prints for campaign signs, and $2,096 to Five Star Souls Designs of Riverside for website and logo designs.

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