After a push for campaign finance reform by Councilman Steven Nascimento since 2014, the Incumbent Council Candidate has come out of the gate in the first ever City of Turlock district election with a report of big money.
For the Turlock City Council district races, the candidate’s campaign has already separated itself from the other potential candidates by receiving over $23,000 in monetary contributions. With loans and nonmonetary contributions, the Nascimento campaign has amassed over $27,000. The campaign is for a district comprised of approximately a quarter of the city.
There are 5 intending candidates for Turlock City Council in two districts. This year marks the first ever district elections for City Council and 3 candidates have already begun the nomination process. Even though the nomination process has just started, the campaigning has already begun for intending candidates.
Gil Esquer, intending City Council Candidate for District 2, currently has donations to his District 2 campaign including two $250 donations and a $50 loan. The campaign as whole has garnered $729 dollars from June 1 to June 30. Esquer was the first intending council candidate to begin the nomination process in July.
Jaime Franco, also an intending City Council candidate for District 2, has filed a 460 form which lists a $100 loan. Total expenditures for Franco are currently at $88.50.
As of this writing, Donald Babadalir, intending City Council candidate for District 4, does not have a 460 form available on the City of Turlock website. Although he has not begun the nomination process, he has confirmed that he intends to follow through with it.
Incumbent Councilwoman Amy Bublak is currently in the nomination process for City Council for District 4. Councilwoman Bublak’s 2016 campaign has currently received contributions totaling $100. This was a contribution from the Amy Bublak for City Council 2012 funds committee. No expenditures have been recorded for Bublak’s 2016 campaign from Jan. 1 to June 30.
Incumbent Councilman Steven Nascimento, who is also in the nomination process for City Council in District 4, is currently ahead in funding for his campaign having garnered $27,360.23 total contributions from January 1 to June 30.
Councilman Nascimento received his first large campaign contribution from Manuel Vieira for $1,000 back in March, even while discussing campaign finance reform at Council meetings and special public community meetings. Other $1,000 donations to Councilman Nascimento’s campaign include donations from Alan Marchant and the Northern California Carpenters Regional Council.
Currently, Councilman Nascimento’s largest donor is Stephen Smith, owner of S.H. Smith Farms, with donations totaling $1,500. This is followed by Marc & LeeAnn Dias, owners of Dias Construction, with donations totaling $1,200.
Other notable donations include a $500 contribution from former Turlock Mayor Brad Bates, a $250 contribution from former Turlock Mayor John Lazar, and a $500 contribution from Councilman Nascimento’s largest donor of $2,000 in 2012, John Ferrari, the husband of Turlock Certified Farmers’ Market founder, Jeani Ferrari.
Councilman Nascimento’s 460 form has 80 itemized monetary campaign contributions totaling $20,150. This averages out to approximately $250 per person out of 80.
Unitemized contributions for Councilman Nascimento’s 2016 campaign total $3,678. Combined with a $2,000 loan received by the campaign, this brings the Nascimento campaign’s 2016 monetary campaign contributions to a total of $23,828.
For nonmonetary contributions, Councilman Nascimento’s 2016 campaign has received $1,532.23 in value of nonmonetary contributions. These include refreshments from the Seven-Up Bottling company, desserts, and a venue at Pageo Lavender Farms.
For expenditures, Councilman Nascimento’s 2016 campaign has already made expenditures totaling $16,647.94. Some of the larger expenditures include $4,598.63 to H&S Signs LLC, MTA Brown Mail Masters Plus for $1,783.35, and El Nido Productions for $1,413. The campaign also has an accrued expense of $4,067.14 for Mustard Seed Catering.
Comparatively, Nascimento’s 2016 campaign has more than tripled the total amount of the total amount of contributions from Councilman Nascimento’s 2012 campaign for City Council during the January 1 to June 30 filing period.
Of the sitting Turlock Councilmembers, the only campaign to have raised as much money as Nascimento campaign during the January 1 to June 30 filing period was Mayor Gary Soiseth when he ran for Mayor in 2014. Within the same comparative time period, Mayor Soiseth received $32,402 in total contributions and made $11,289 worth of total expenditures. However, while the mayor has an at large election including all of Turlock, this year Councilman Nascimento is looking to represent one of four districts, District 4. Only the people in that District will receive a ballot with Councilman Nascimento as an option, along with Incumbent Councilwoman Amy Bublak and grass roots challenger Donald Babadalir.
These first ever district elections are meant to give opportunity for communities in Turlock to be better represented. Grassroots efforts such as those from Gil Esquer, Jaime Franco, and Donald Babadalir will have better chances at moving forward to represent their communities. A new City Councilmember is virtually guaranteed with election newcomers Esquer and Franco potentially going head to head for District 2.
These Council district elections for Turlock City Council will be taking place on November 8 as part of the General Election.
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