The candidates for the Amarillo City Council made their first financial showings on Thursday, as the first finance reports of the May 4th election cycle were due.
All fourteen candidates filed reports with the city secretary’s office, showing expenditures, contributions, and other financial activity during the reporting cycle. As of press time, all of the filed finance reports were available through the city secretary’s office, with the exception of the report filed by Place 4 challenger Steven R. Rosas.
In the race for mayor, Ginger Nelson is far ahead in the fundraising game. The one term incumbent and attorney reported bringing in $69,406 in the most recent reporting period. Nelson’s top monetary contributions came in the form of donations between $1,000 and $2,500 a piece. Nelson also reported a handful of in-kind contributions, with one notable contribution coming from Amarillo Matters.
Nelson’s opponents both had similar financial reports. Kip Billups came in second in the fundraising race, pulling in around $4,675. Billups’ top contributions came from Misty Boyer and Ryan Brown, in the form of two $500 contributions. Claudette Smith, the third candidate in the race, came close to Billups in the fundraising department, pulling in $4,297. Her top monetary contribution came from Fisher Enterprises, LTD in the form of $500.
For Place 1, Councilwoman Elaine Hays also reported being ahead in her fundraising race. Hays brought in $22,701 for her campaign, with her top contributions coming from Mike and Liz Hughes and the Amarillo Association of Realtors. Hays was one of the few candidates filing to report no in-kind contributions.
Richard Herman, a former justice of the peace, came the closest to Hays in the Place 1 race fundraising. Herman brought in $300 for his campaign, followed by business consultant Jay Kirkman at $75. Hayden Pedigo, the youngest candidate running for any spot on the City Council this year, reported no contributions.
In the race for Amarillo City Council Place 2, the two candidates reported little activity compared to the other races on the ballot. Incumbent Freda Powell reported bringing in $4,225 for her campaign, while challenger Treva Harper reported no contributions, but a few out-of-pocket expenditures.
Place 3 featured more competitive fundraising in that race. Incumbent Eddy Sauer led his two opponents with $28,375 raised. Sauer’s top cash contribution came from the Amarillo Association of Realtors at $2,000, but he also reported a few contributions of around $1,000 a piece.
Tom Warren II reported a sizable haul in his bid to unseat Sauer. Warren reported a total haul of $22,796, with his top cash contributions being $1,000 from his wife and $500 from Les Smith.
Brad Torch, the third candidate in the Place 3 race, reported bringing in $1,355 for his campaign, with his top cash contributions being $25 a piece from Carole McDaniel and David Bustos.
For Place 4, incumbent Howard Scott Smith reported a sizable haul at $32,425 for his campaign. Smith reported top contribution being $5,000 from the Amarillo Association of Realtors. The report for Smith’s only opponent, Steven Rosas, was not readily available from the City of Amarillo’s website.
Voters will decide all five of these races on the May 4 election day.
Editor’s note: Full financial reports will be uploaded on the Amarillo Pioneer website.