With two San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisor seats up for grabs, the five candidates running are raking in cash, collecting endorsements and fervently campaigning.
Campaign finance reports for the second half of 2017 show San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Lynn Compton outpacing her opponent Jimmy Paulding in fundraising for the District 4 race. Compton collected $105,337 in cash donations while Paulding raised $60,213 in monetary and non-monetary donations.
In the District 2 race, Gibson raised $18,053 in cash and non-monetary donations during the second half of 2017. His two opponents, small business owner Jeff Eckles and real estate broker and attorney Patrick Sparks, entered into the race after the latest campaign finance disclosure period.
This years races are especially contentious with divides in both the Democratic and Republican parties. Locally, Republicans are divided on how to promote the party.
A few months ago, The SLO County Progressives ran a coup take over of the Democratic Central Committee creating a divide between moderate Democrats and the far-left leaning Progressives. While the SLO County progressives endorse candidates, its co-founder Nick Andre’s works as a paid consultant or web designer for the candidates alongside Tom Fulks, who serves as a paid campaign manager or media buyer.
The district runs along the coast from San Simeon to Los Osos and includes a portion of San Luis Obispo. It has 4,751 more Democrats than Republicans, giving Democratic candidate Gibson an edge over Sparks, a Republican. Eckles is registered as declined to state.
Gibson raised $17,937 in cash donations and $116 in non-monetary contributions between July 1 and July 31. Throughout 2017, Gibson raised $22,053 in total contributions.
Adam Hill for Supervisor donated $2,000 to Gibson, the largest of his campaign. Attorney Don Earnst, Daou Vineyards & Winery, and Allyn and Lee Arnold all donated $1,000 to Gibson’s reelection campaign.
Under expenses, Gibson lists $2,000 to Tribune columnist Tom Fulks for campaign consulting, $1,000 to Nick Andre’s Kumani for web design and $1,000 to District 4 supervisor candidate Jimmy Paulding.
District 4, which includes Nipomo, Arroyo Grande and Oceano, has 2,482 more Republicans than Democrats giving Compton, a registered Republican, an advantage over Paulding, a registered Democratic.
Compton raised $105,337 in cash donations contributions between July 1 and Jan. 31. Throughout 2017, Compton raised $164,566 in total contributions.
Compton’s largest donor was Nicholas Cook, a retired resident of San Luis Obispo. Cook donated $6,950 to Compton. Compton’s second largest donation, $5,000, came from April Papich Construction. Compton also received a pair of $4,000 donations from developer John Scardino and a California real estate PAC.
Compton’s largest expenses have been for campaign literature and her consultants, Kristen Handley and Russo and McGarty Consultants out of Sacramento.
From July 1 through Jan. 31, Paulding raised $60,213 in total contributions. Paulding was the last candidate to enter the District 4 supervisor race, and he did not begin raising money until late August.
An electricians union, the IBEW, donated $3,500 to Paulding, the largest of his campaign. John Paulding, Susan Paulding and a labor union all donated $2,500.
Paulding expenses include more than $10,000 to Andre’s consulting company, Kumani.
Supervisor candidates who receive more than 50 percent of the vote in the June 5 primary will win the election outright. Races in which no one wins in June will end with a November runoff.