As the 2018 election inches closer, local candidates have been competing to collect campaign contributions for basics like yard signs, pamphlets and call lists.
With one more filing deadline—Oct. 26—before Election Day, Nov.6, not all Hollister City Council candidates have filed paperwork to let voters know basic information about campaign spending.
The state’s Fair Political Practices Committee (FPPC) requires candidates to complete a series of forms that declare campaign finance activities in the interest of public transparency. All documents are public record and can be accessed in person through the City Clerk’s office or online via the City’s election portal.
In an effort to understand how Hollister City Council candidates have been raising and spending campaign money, the Free Lance looked at each candidate’s public forms and requested comments via email from each candidate on specific contributions or trends noted in the filings.
Each candidate was asked to describe his or her fundraising approach. The filings in this article were updated at the end of September, as the candidates continue to get contributions they will continue to file. The next report deadline is Oct. 26.
Candidates who anticipate spending or receiving more than $2,000 in campaign funds must file several forms with the FPPC and open a campaign bank account.
Even candidates who expect to raise or spend under $2,000 must still complete and file a candidate campaign statement, or form 470. Candidates do not have to create a campaign bank account if they are only spending money to cover campaign fees.
Candidates who have money left over from past campaigns can use the funds if properly redesignated and declared as surplus.
All contributions over $25 must be documented. Contributions of $100 or more must be shown on the filings with the name and employment of contributing party; this includes businesses. When looking at a candidate’s FPPC documents, the page may list monetary contributions that were under $100 that were not required to be fully disclosed, but contribute to the campaign’s total funds.
More information on the rules of FPPC campaign filings in local elections can be found at http://www.fppc.ca.gov/content/dam/fppc/NS-Documents/TAD/Campaign%20Manuals/Manual_2/Final_Manual_2_Entire_Manual.pdf.
Here is a summary of the campaign statements filed as of Oct. 19:
Gordon Machado has received $8,022 in monetary contributions, giving himself $2,700 in loans for a total of $10,722.
A notable contribution to Machado’s campaign is $5,000 from Alpha Teknova, a biomedical research company based in Hollister.
Machado said he first became connected with Teknova after learning that CFO Richard Goozh founded the Independent Committee for San Benito County Job Growth. Machado joined the committee and believes he has gained the company’s support because of what he calls his pro-business stance.
“I am committed to supporting new ideas and new ways to bring businesses to Hollister, add more local jobs and reduce the number of people who have to commute to work,” said Machado. “Teknova believes I am the best pro-business candidate.”
In order to begin his campaign, Machado said he gave himself a loan to cover initial costs.
Machado told the Free Lance that he has not taken any money from political action committees (PAC) and that there are no PACs giving money on his behalf.
Keith Snow had not filed any contribution statements. He told the Free Lance that he has chosen not to actively fundraise.
“I am not for the money,” said Snow. “In the past when I did consider it, after talking with people of the community, people are barely making ends meet.”
For the 2018 campaign, incumbent Mayor Ignacio Velazquez hasn’t declared any monetary contributions or loans. However, he has declared a $455 non-monetary contribution.
A non-monetary contribution is a contribution given to a candidate, such as an event space rented without a fee. The non-monetary contribution is evaluated at what that contribution would cost at market value.
Velazquez had a starting balance for his 2018 campaign of $1,515.66 and told the Free Lance this was left over from his past campaigns.
In the District 2 City Council race, incumbent Mickie Solorio Luna has out-raised challenger Rolan Resendiz.
Mickie Solorio Luna
Incumbent Luna has received $5,083 in monetary and $274 in non-monetary contributions, for a total of $5,357.
There is a $2,883 contribution on Luna’s filings that does not have a name attributed. She told the Free Lance this is from individual contributions collected at a fundraising event earlier in her campaign.
Because the compilation of monetary contributions at the event were over $2,000, Luna had to declare them on her filings.
Luna also received $200 from the Hollister Police Association, $200 from Central Coast Leasing and $1,500 from the Law Office of Nooshin Delii. The rest of Luna’s filings can be found on the Hollister election portal.
Luna said she works with Delii as chair of a non-profit that attempts to get young girls interested in law. Luna said this was the largest contribution from a single donor to her campaign.
“She’s the only one who gave me that much money,” said Luna. “That’s because I’ve been working for years with her.”
Rolan Resendiz has raised $3,863 total in contributions.
Some notable filings to Resendiz’s campaign are $300 from Hollister Paint Company, $150 from San Benito County Supervisor, Jaime De La Cruz, $500 from Sanilary Truck Drivers & Holpers, $500 from National Union of HealthCare Workers, $500 from RJR Environmental Prof Services, $200 from San Benito Heathing & Sheetmetal, lnc.
Resendiz also received loans of $527 from Joel Esqeuda and $623.48 from Tinaya Aguila.
Resendiz said he Interviewed for the endorsement from the National Union of HealthCare Workers and was selected to receive the contribution. Other than these contributions, Rolan said his method to fundraising has been mostly residents reaching out and hoping to contribute.
He said most of the contributions he has received have been “$20 here, $100 there.”
However, Resendiz said his next filings will include contributions raised by selling tickets to a campaign event.
“It’s just little by little, honestly,” said Resendiz. “I’m trying to Bernie Sanders it.”
In the District 3 race no candidates have filed any contribution statements. Their campaign signs are visible throughout the district, but no contributions were available as of Oct. 22.
Has no filing and did not respond to the Free Lance’s request for comment.
Spencer currently has file no paperwork, but said she is preparing to declare her largest contribution in her campaign for $251 from Service Employees International Union local 521.
The union’s website says, “Local 521 represents 40,000 public and nonprofit, private sector workers in the central Bay Area region and in the Central Valley.”
The union also endorsed Machado for mayor, Luna for District 2 and Marty Richman for District 4.
Spencer said she has not actively approached fundraising and has no PACs contributing funds on her behalf. “The limited budget has allowed me to take a more personal approach and allows me to reach out to voters in person,” said Spencer.
Salinas has filed no statements and did not reply to the Free Lance’s request for comment.
In the District 4 race Marty Richman has outraised Salvador Mora, mostly because he gave himself a campaign loan.
Richman reported he gave his campaign a $3,000 loan and has not declared any other contributions.
He did not respond to requests for comment.
Salvador Mora has not filed any contributions and did not respond to the Free Lance’s request for comment.