CHICO >> Various political action committees registered with the city of Chico and Butte County are pouring money into races to support individual Chico City Council candidates.
A review of the most current campaign finance disclosures filed with the city of Chico shows several groups have organized to support individual and groups of candidates. Some have invested a few hundred dollars while others have raised and spent tens of thousands.
One of the biggest spenders is Chico Citizens for Accountable Government, which supports the election of Reanette Fillmer, Mark Sorensen and Andrew Coolidge. Its principal officer is Mike Maloney.
Paperwork filed Oct. 27 reflects $8,020 expended per candidate to date on direct mail pieces and an additional $5,869 per candidate on radio airtime and production costs. As of Oct. 18, $30,000 had been raised in monetary contributions.
Contributions of $5,000 each had been made by BidCal Inc., Bobcat of Chico, Inc., Thomas M. Dauterman, James M. Paiva, Bill Webb Construction Inc. and Lakewest Park Partnership. Additionally, $5,000 contributions had been made by each of Guillon Business Park Properties LP2, LP3, LP4 and Guillon/Brouhard General Partnership, LP1.
The ChicoPolitics PAC, with treasurers Michael Jones and Kelly Skelton, has a stated purpose of to help elect Chico City Council candidates who refuse support from the firefighter and police unions.
As of Oct. 18, it has received $1,110 in monetary contributions and $1,397 in nonmonetary contributions, and expended $460. It has contributed $100 each to the campaigns of Sorensen, Scott Gruendl and Fillmer.
The Chico Firefighters Legislative Action Group has received $6,158 to date and expended $1,865. Their expenditures include meals with Lupe Arim-Law, Fillmer, Coolidge, union members and interim Chief Shane Lauderdale.
The Chico Police Officers Association Political Action Committee filed its statement of organization with the city July 31. No other paperwork had been filed since, which means it is not in compliance with city and Fair Political Practices Commission requirements.
It could be at risk of fines from both the city and the oversight agency of $10 per day, and potentially dating back to 2012 because of some other gaps in its paperwork, said City Clerk Debbie Presson.
She has sent reminders that the reports were due and a notice that the group missed the filing deadline. She said she has not heard anything back.
“I’m hoping to resolve it,” she said. “My hope behind all of this is compliance and getting the forms in here for citizens’ review.”
Presson also confirmed several political action committees participating in the city election have not filed courtesy copies with the city, although they have filed with the county. She also contacted the FPPC on that issue.
Led by Thomas P. Kozik of Chico, Butte County Awareness and Accountability states its goal is “educate voters about issues and candidates using mail, online methods and grassroots.”
As of Oct. 18, $12,786 had been contributed, with $5,000 from Wayne Cook, $2,000 from Citizens for a Safer Butte County, $1,000 from Lewis and Marilyn Everett, $1,000 from Larry Wahl for Supervisor 2018, $500 from Larry Wahl and $500 from Joe Montes. About $11,041 had been spent, including costs for two mailers for Chico elections, one of them a critical piece on Scott Gruendl.
Another county filer is Chico Democrats, led by Mike Hakwins of Chico. It has supported mailings through a federal committee as independent expenditures, including $500 to support Forough Molina, $450 donations to support Gruendl and $250 in support of Arim-Law, as well as $250 each in opposition to Fillmer, Sorensen and Coolidge. It has also contributed $200 to Gruendl’s campaign and $250 to Molina’s campaign.
Chico Conservation Voters, led by Kelly Meagher of Chico to support “environmental and social justice candidates and issues,” also files with the county. It raised $23,873 from Jan. 1 to Sept. 30, with no more recent filings shown. Those contributions include $16,000 from Meagher and $1,500 from John Luvaas.
The group has spent $6,942 on billboards, food, yard signs and stickers. Its filing documents do not indicate support or opposition to a particular candidate.
Candidates are also amassing their own sums of contributions to support their campaigns. Six of the seven candidates have now raised $147,876 in monetary donations, loans and nonmonetary support for the year, as of the period ending Oct. 18.
A review of the filings, which were due Thursday, show Coolidge and Fillmer continue to generate the most in contributions and spending. Campaign spending has also increased, at $59,067 during this most recent period and $119,795 total for the year.
Contact reporter Ashley Gebb at 896-7768.