The last time two Manteca City Council seats as well as the mayor’s post were on the ballot in 2014 candidates running raised what was then a record $123,845.
This time around as of Oct. 20 — 17 days before the Nov. 6 election — hopefuls have collected $175,931 in campaign donations. That shatters the old record by more than 42 percent.
The money, in descending order, comes from four distinct groups — the building trades, agricultural interests, small businesses, and donations $99 and under typically through tickets at fund-raising events.
The most significant number as of the Oct. 20 date for the last filing required by the California Fair Political Practices Commission is not how much cash and in-lieu donations candidates have raised but what cash they had on hand going into the last two weeks of the campaign. That is the time period when traditionally the heaviest push is made aimed at the third of the voters that still cast ballots in person as well as roughly half of the electorate that votes by mail but have yet to do so.
Mayor Steve DeBrum had a campaign fund balance of $18,927 on Oct. 20. Challenger Ben Cantu had $75.20.
Among those seeking two council seats, Dave Breitenbucher had a balance of $8,476, Mike Morowit $5,923, Jose Nuno $4,188, and Chris Silva $1,071.
Overall DeBrum had raised $59,261, Cantu $30,355, Nuno $42,356, Morowit $26,315, Breitenbucher $13,444, and Silva $4,250.
Gary Singh — who is now midway through his first four-year term — until this election cycle had set the individual high mark of $51,405 in his successful 2014 campaign when there were only two council seats up for grabs.
Since Manteca is a general law city the mayor is essentially an elected council member that runs the meetings, makes appointments to the various commissions with the consent of the council majority, and serves as the ceremonial top elected city official.
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