EXCLUSIVE ANALYSIS: The Source of Local Campaign Contributions for 2014

EXCLUSIVE ANALYSIS: The Source of Local Campaign Contributions for 2014

Local candidates who have declared their intention to run for office in 2014 filed their latest financial activity reports with the Leon County Supervisor of Elections earlier this month. The reports filed to date cover all contributions and expenditures through September 30, 2013.

In an exclusive analysis, Tallahassee Reports has compiled two tables based on contribution data for three City of Tallahassee Commission races and two Leon County Commission races. To date, only the incumbents have filed to run. Challengers have until June of 2014 to enter any of the races.

In the table below, total contributions, the amount of contributions collected inside and outside of Tallahassee, and the amount of contributions collected inside and outside of Florida is given for each of the five local candidates.

Total ContributionsIn TallahasseeOutside TallahasseeIn FloridaOutside Florida
Andrew Gillum$171,583$128,613 (75%)$42,970
$146,687 (85.5%)$24,896
Gil Ziffer$71,825$64,825 (90.3%)$7,000$71,075 (99.0%)$750
Nancy Miller$66,876$60,626 (90.7%)$6,250$65,426 (98.0%)$1,450
Kristen Dozier$53,520$47,175 (88.1%)$6,345$52,575 (98.2%)$945
Nick Maddox$36,305$29,605 (81.5%)$6,700$34,555 (95.2%)$1,750
TOTALS$400,109$330,844 (82.7%)$69,265
$69,265 (92.6%)$29,791

The table shows that Mayoral candidate Andrew Gillum is by far the leader in contributions among the candidates for five different seats. Gillum has collected $171,583 while the next two closest candidates are City Commissioners Gil Ziffer with $71,825 and Nancy Miller with $66,876. The two Leon County Commission candidates Kristen Dozier and Nick Maddox have raised $53,520 and $36,305, respectively. The total amount of campaign contributions raised among the five incumbent candidates is $400,109.

The above table also shows that Mayoral candidate Gillum leads in contributions from donors outside of Tallahassee and outside of Florida. Gillum has collected $42,970 outside of Tallahassee while the other four candidates have each collected between $6,000 and $7,000 from outside of Tallahassee.

This trend is even more pronounced when looking at contributions from outside of Florida. Gillum has collected $24,896 from outside of Florida while none of the four other candidates have collected more than $1,750 from outside of Florida. The top three sources of contributions for Gillum outside of Florida are New York ($4,725),  District of Columbia ($3,566), and Massachusetts ($2,510).

These trends may be a reflection of what Commissioner Andrew Gillum does when he is not a City Commissioner.  In 2009, Gillum accepted the position of Director of Youth Leadership Programs for People for the American Way Foundation (PFAWF) which oversees three program areas: Young People For, Young Elected Officials Network, and the Young Professionals Activist network. Commissioner Gillums responsibilities require a lot of travel and communications with individuals and groups across the country.

The second table in the campaign contribution analysis shows the top contributors to all candidates based on the address given for the contribution. The table shows that eleven contributors account for $78,000 in campaign contributions or approximately 20% of all contributions in the 2014 election cycle for City and County Commission races.

Contributor Contributor AddressProfessionAmount
Hunter & Harp Capital
311 E Jennings Street
Multiple Businesses$18,000
Sandco4708 Capital Circle NW
Private and Government Contractor$14,750
Talcor1018 Thomasville Rd Suite 200A
Commercial Real Estate$12,000
Tupelo Development401 E. Virginia Street
Multiple Businesses$6,000
Ajax Construction
1080 Commerce Blvd, Midway
Private and Government Contractor$5,000
M of Tallahassee4223 Capital Circle NW
Private and Government Contractor$4,500
Linnan & York507 E Call St
Environmental and land use attorneys$4,000
Minard Investment Co.550 E. Georgia St.
Multiple Businesses$3,750
Pittman Investments1024 East Park Avenue
Government Consulting$3,500
Marpan SupplyP.O. Box 2068
Private Businesses & Government Contractor$3,500
Ronald Book, PA18851 NE 29th Ave, Miami
Government Consulting$3,000
TOTAL $78,000

The top eleven contributors represent private business interests, government contractors, government consultants, and commercial real estate.   The top three contributors in the table have donated approximately $44,000 to various candidates.

4 Responses to "EXCLUSIVE ANALYSIS: The Source of Local Campaign Contributions for 2014"

  1. Thank you for this information and I hope you report on future reports after each campaign reporting period. The publication that should be reporting this, the Tallahassee Democrat, has abandoned much of their responsibility of watchdog journalism. Editor Gabordi is a sycophant to lobbyists and PR firm owners/politicians. Even declaring one city commissioner/PR firm owner his “Walking Buddy”. Gabordi sat on a school board and recommended Gary Yordon receive an 85k per year job with Leon County Schools and another board with the Marpan owner on the Economic Development Board when the Marpan owner was chairman. I believe it’s long overdue for a report on how much taxpayers are paying to Marpan every month and if the citizens are getting a valid return for the so called service Marpan is providing? Perhaps, the Marpan contract citizens are paying for is a little high judging from the new mansion the Marpan owner bought and the amount of campaign contributions he is throwing around?

    Perhaps citizens overpaid on the Joint Dispatch Center that Ajax constructed? Has Gabordi reported the conflict of interest between Ajax and city commissioner Scott Maddox?

    Perhaps Talcor is overpaid by the contract citizens pay for Talcor to oversee the Innovation Park facility if they are able to contribute so much money to local campaigns?

    Citizens are unknowingly contributing to these campaigns through the contracts they are paying for to Marpan, Talcor, Sandco, and Ajax.

    On the next article include the total amount in contracts these contributors receive from city/county contracts. That would be quite the reveal!

  2. Thank you for this article. It certainly IS noteworthy that outside influence is so prevalent in this election.

    I’m also guessing Tupelo gave that money to their business buddy, Gil Ziffer?

  3. I am confused – I listened to you on Preston’s show this morning and heard the message loud and clear – you and Preston don’t beleive that campaign contributions should come from outside of Tallahassee, nor shall they come from anyone who does business with or needs anything from the City of Tallahassee. So based on this, campaign contributions cant be made from anyone. Interesting

    1. Mr. Stephens, I published an article that showed the geographic source of contributions. The fact that one candidate has significantly more contributions from outside the city and the state is noteworthy and raises important questions. I do not necessarily think it is “bad” but it does raise questions. Do you not agree?

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