The Dayton mayoral race is shaping up to be the second costliest in recent memory.
Dayton City Commissioner Nan Whaley is far out-raising former Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge A.J. Wagner for the Nov. 5 election.
So far Whaley has raised $338,370 to Wagner’s $110,208 in the primary and general elections, according to campaign finance reports filed by Thursday’s deadline at the Montgomery County Board of Elections. Those figures included money reported in January for 2012.
Whaley has spent $276,106 and Wagner has spent $118,701 to win the mayor’s seat now held by Gary Leitzell, who was defeated in the May primary.
Together Whaley and Wagner have taken in about 72 percent of the $623,000 that was raised by this point in the most expensive Dayton mayor’s race — the 2001 showdown between Democrat Rhine McLin and then-mayor Mike Turner, a Republican. McLin won that race and Turner has served in Congress since 2003.
For the current reporting period — covering the period since the May election — Whaley raised $170,456, spent $60,617. She has $113,125 on hand going in to the final leg of the race.
“The community has been so supportive of my campaign for mayor of Dayton. I am humbled and thankful that I have such a diverse group behind me,” Whaley said.
Large amounts of money raised by Whaley come from union and other political action committees and individuals who do not live in Dayton, including some from out of state. Whaley, who is endorsed by the Montgomery County Democratic Party, also received an in-kind contribution from the Ohio Democratic Party $6,234 for production costs.
Wagner said that shows that Whaley’s fundraising is not a reflection on his ability to win, since many of her contributors cannot vote.
“I’m not with the machine,” said Wagner, referring to the Democratic Party. “The machine raises money for you and that’s all part of the deal for saying I’m not going not take the (county party) endorsement.”
Wagner raised $31,766 and spent $22,023, for this reporting period, and has $12,941 on hand. He also accepted money from non-Dayton residents and his largest contributions included $5,000 each from Jean Woodhull of Oakwood and Teresa Huber of Huber Heights.
“I think we’ve got enough money to be competitive in the race and I’m still very confident that we are doing ok,” Wagner said.
In the race for two Dayton City Commission seats, incumbent Joey D. Williams raised the most — $10,780 for the reporting period — and spent $7,610. State school board member Jeffrey J. Mims Jr. raised $8,306 and spent $6,292. Businessman David Esrati raised $5,030 and spent $3,821. Northwest Priority Board Chairman David K. Greer received $2,902 in contributions and spent $4,115, including money brought forward from previous reports.
Oakwood judge race features 8 candidates
In Oakwood eight candidates are competing to become municipal judge. Chris Epley received the most contributions — $13,822 - followed by Chris Conard with $13,704.
Contributions for the other judge candidates were: Michael Hochwolt, $6,215; Brian Huelsman, $5,500; Ward C. Barrentine, $4,600; Margaret M. Quinn, $3,482; Sara Hein, $3,100; Richard Lipowicz, $1,150.
Schools raising money for levy campaigns
Multiple school levies are on the ballot, including Beavercreek, Springboro and Lebanon.
No campaign finance report was turned in by the deadline for Beavercreek Schools, which is making it’s fifth try for a new emergency levy since 2010. Greene County Board of Elections Deputy Director Llyn McCoy said the levy committee’s tardiness will be referred to the state election board. The levy committee treasurer could not be reached for comment.
Beavercreek’s five-year, 6.3-mill levy would pay for school operations. It would raise $10.3 million annually, money the district said is vital to move the district forward.
Coming off five consecutive levy failures, Springboro Schools is asking voters to approve a five-year, 8.78-mill levy that is a renewal and a decrease of a levy that expires at the end of the year. The proposed levy would raise $7.9 million annually for operations, down from the expiring levy’s $9.2 million in annual revenues.
The levy committee reported $9,252 in total contributions, $8,202 from previous reporting periods and $1,050 in new contributions. The largest single contribution for the reporting period was $1,000 from the Dayton Board of Realtors, according to the report filed with the Warren County Board of Elections.
The committee reported $8,788 on hand.
The Citizens for Quality Lebanon Schools reported $26,434 available during the reporting period, $19,072 carried forward from previous campaigns and $7,362 in new contributions. The new money came primarily in $20 contributions from the district staff.
Voters in the district are considering a 1.87-mill additional levy for construction and permanent improvements, and a 0.5-mill additional levy for ongoing maintenance.The district is also lowering the rate of an older levy..
Staff writer Larry Budd contributed to this report.
Watch Dayton mayor debate Sunday
Watch a special 1-hour debate between City Commissioner Nan Whaley and former judge and Montgomery County Auditor A.J. Wagner on Sunday, Oct. 27, at 11 a.m. on WHIO-TV Channel 7. Hear the debate at 8:30 a.m. on 95.7 FM and AM 1290.