There are about eight months until voters go to the polls, but Mayor Garrad Marsh already is sitting on about $75,000 in campaign cash in his bid for a second term, with most of the money coming from an October fundraiser.
Typically when politicians have lots of money early in the campaign, they are trying to scare off others from entering the race.
Marsh said that is not his intent, but it’s OK with him if others gets second or third or even fourth thoughts about challenging him. As of Thursday afternoon, he was the only mayoral candidate to file a “candidate intention statement” with the city clerk’s office.
Marsh said it’s too much for him to attend to his duties as mayor, campaign for another term and raise money. So he said he is trying to get the money part out of the way. He figures he will need $125,000 to $150,000 to run for re-election. He said he and his wife are planning another fundraiser.
Though no one has emerged yet, Marsh said he expects to face a challenger or challengers in his race for re-election.
The mayor’s campaign cash is detailed in his most recent campaign finance form filed with the city last month. The form can be seen at www.modestogov.com/ccl/campaign_statements. Marsh raised more than $55,000 from September through December. He said that money is from the October fundraiser he held at his home, with contributors giving before, during and after the event.
Although the form shows he has about $75,000 on hand, he said he’s spent about $20,000 since he filed the form and has about $20,000 in outstanding campaign pledges.
Marsh said about 200 people attended the fundraiser. The campaign finance form shows he received donations from business owners, developers, attorneys, current and former public officials, and others. He received $3,000 each from his daughters Erika and Stephanie Pitman (the two married brothers).
Marsh received donations of $2,000 each from: BFC Properties, Bavaro Employee Benefits President Nicholas Bavaro, Direct Line Technology’s Martha Connor, developer Carl Wesenberg, and the Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 442 political action committee.
He received $1,100 from attorney Charles Brunn and $1,050 from attorney Gary Nelson.
Donors contributing $1,000 each included the Prime Shine car wash chain, American Chevrolet, attorney George Arata, MTC Distributing, rancher Dave Santos, the Modesto Junk Co., real estate investor Diana Soranno, and real estate investor Kimberly Soranno.
The smaller contributions include donations from psychologist Phil Trompetter ($100), Boyett Petroleum CEO Carl Boyett ($500), Central Valley Automotive ($700), entrepreneur Dan Costa ($250), former Councilwoman Kenni Friedman ($250), attorney Dave Gianelli ($500), former Mayor Carol Whiteside ($250) and Modesto City Schools board member Sue Zwahlen ($100).
Bee staff writer Kevin Valine can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 578-2316.