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Sayles campaign still owes $24.5K out of $36K spent
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LATHROP - Kristy Sayles finished ahead of her contender in the November 2008 mayoral elections but not just in the ballot count.

Copies of the candidates’ campaign disclosure statements released this week also showed that she led not just her challenger, Councilman Robert Oliver, but the rest of the pack in campaign expenses.

And based on the figures she submitted at City Hall, she won another two-year term as mayor but with an outstanding debt of $24,475.96 that remains to be paid by her Kristy Sayles for Mayor campaign. Her total contributions for the calendar year 2008 showed a total of $10,977 and her total expenditures at $36,464.16.

During the period from Oct. 19 to Dec. 31, 2008 alone, Sayles received $8,297 in contributions.

Sayles reports in her form 460, which is the Campaign Disclosure Statement, that she received a total of $8,297 in cash contributions during the period from Oct. 19 to Dec. 31, 2008. The total includes $8,297 in cash received and a $2,500 loan made out to her Kristy Sayles for Mayor campaign from the Early Start Child Development Center business she owns and operates out of her home. Her campaign actually received two loans from her business, with the first loan totaling $3,000.

The single largest expense in her campaign came from Strategic Research in Stockton, the political consultant that Sayles hired which launched the blitz of controversial flyers mailed to all residents and businesses in Lathrop. The negative tenor of the flyers, which primarily targeted rival Oliver and then-council candidate Steve Dresser in a negative light, caused one of the biggest furors during the highly contentious campaigning in the days leading up to the Nov. 4 elections. In addition to the flyers, Strategic Research also utilized phone banks in Sayles’ campaign.

The $18,200.98 tab for Strategic Research is the largest unpaid bill in Sayles’ campaign report. The others are Boss Business Systems in Stockton which still has to collect $3,824.98 from Sayles’ campaign committee. The third outstanding balance of $450 is to The Rush Publications owned by Lathrop real estate broker Frank Cavaco, a good friend of the mayor.

Oliver trailed Sayles in total campaign expenditures by nearly $10,000. But he is in far better position than the mayor in terms of outstanding debts. Oliver’s campaign owes just $1,281.19. Like Sayles, Oliver who is a retired educator and minister, also loaned his campaign some money - the sum of $2,400.

The biggest contributors to Sayles’ campaign include AKF Development in Manteca which gave $2,000. The Grupe Company and F&M Construction of Stockton each gave $500. The largest donation came from Ornellas for Supervisor 2008 which gave $2,500.

Oliver’s biggest campaign contributors were Ron and Susan Dell’Osso who gave $1,000. Three supporters gave $500 each - High Five Plaza (Amarjit Khinda) of Lathrop, Joe’s Texaco Service (Dalwinder Dhoot) also of Lathrop, and Crepac (Central Valley) of Los Angeles. Joe’s Truck Wash (Jito Kaur Birring) of Lathrop gave $250.

Then-Council member Martha Salcedo, who was appointed vice mayor after the elections, spent only $2,146.11 to finish first among the five who ran. Her report showed she spent just $2,146.11 for her campaign which includes a $1,358.67 loan she made to her campaign which is listed as her outstanding debt.

But the candidate who arguably ran the most effective campaign strategy was Christopher Mateo who finished second to Salcedo and earned him his first elected stint on the council. Mateo said his campaign was financed by just $600, all of which came out of his pocket with about half of that spent on mass-mailed flyers that he himself made. He did not receive any campaign contribution, said the US Navy veteran and retired postal clerk.

“Not a single cent from anybody,” he said with a small laugh.

His campaign, he said, was powered mainly the old-fashioned way - pounding the pavement.