MARC GARMAN - EDITOR

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 2/26/08
Image      Election Financing in Vallejo

Or, What does it cost to get elected to Vallejo's City Council

By Paul Norberg--Retired CFO (With Glitter Sprinkles from Katie Miessner--Aging Disco Queen)  

 

The November election was one the costliest in Vallejo’s history.  Erin Hannigan raised $75,758 and Mike Wilson raised $80,445.  In addition the United Workers For Local Government PAC spent over $26,000 each on Hannigan and Wilson plus another $34,675 on Pam Pitts.  These “Independent” expenditures by the PAC are not reported by the candidate and are in addition to the money raised by their campaign committees.  That brings the total income to over $100,000 each for Hannigan and Wilson. Contrast this to the $25,000 raised by Joanne Schivley.  In past elections Hermie Sunga and Tom Bartee were also supported by the unions who now, with Wilson and Hannigan, control a majority of the council.
 

Why would United Workers For Local Government spend this much money on a Vallejo city council election?  First we need to understand where United Workers For Local Government gets their money.  This PAC was established in 2007 with Vallejo firefighter Jon Riley as President.  They collected $195,441 from several unions including $79,500 from Firefighters Local 1186, $33,000 from Vallejo Police Officers Association, $21,000 from the California Teachers Association, $13,500 from IBEW Local 180 in Napa and the remainder from other local and national unions.

 

They spent the money on elections in Vallejo, Benicia, Fairfield and Solano County.  The largest amount was spent in Vallejo with $88,155 going to Hannigan, Wilson and Pitts.  In addition twenty two individual firefighters contributed close to $14,000 to the Hannigan, Wilson and Pitts campaign committees. 

 

We will see the results of all these contributions to the public safety union supported candidates when the votes are taken this week. Without fail, Sunga and Bartee have consistently voted in favor of the public safety unions.  We will see how Hannigan and Wilson vote on the revised budget including crucial votes related to these unions that will impact Vallejo for years to come:

 

 

  • Will the council extend the Fire and Police Union contracts yet again; extensions on contracts the City couldn’t even afford back when they were first approved in 2000?
  • Will the council decide to continue the effort to challenge "binding arbitration", a piece of legislation in our City Charter that basically completely weakens the city’s position when in negotiations with these unions?
  • Will the council remove benefits given to the Fire and Police Unions that the City cannot afford, benefits what include retirement at 90% of top pay, and full health benefits for retirees for the remainder of their lives?
  • Will the City stop the practice of “Union Business Leave Abuse”, a practice that among other things includes drinking so much alcohol that a Fire Union rep takes 24 hours off, paid by the City, and under which the Union President/Assistant Fire Chief Kurt Henke attends to other cities’ union business while on Vallejo’s payroll?

 

  And now the Numbers


United Workers for Local Government 
Receipts     2007
Firefighters Local 1186, Vallejo   79,500
Vallejo Police Officers Assn   33,000
California Teachers Association, Burlingame   21,000
IBEW Local 180, Napa   13,500
UA Local 343, Plumbers & Steamfitters, Vallejo   8,500
California Professional Firefighters, Sacramento   5,000
United Assn Plumbers & Steamfitters, Vallejo   3,000
UA Local 355, Plumbers & Pipefitters, Vallejo   3,000
Benicia Police Officers Assn   3,500
SMW Local 104, Sheetmetal Workers, San Ramon   3,000
District Council Ironworkers, Pinole   2,000
United Food & Commercial Local 5, San Jose   2,000
SEIU United Healthcare Workers, Sacramento   2,000
Operating Engineers Local 3, Alameda   2,000
Northern Cal Carpenters Regional Council, Sacramento   2,000
Cement Masons Local 400, Sacramento   1,750
Carpenters Local 180, Vallejo   500
Intl Assn Bridge Structural Ornamental Reinforcing Iron, Benicia   750
UEA PAC, Suisun City   1,500
SEIU Local 1000 Cal State Employees, Sacramento   2,000
Teamsters Drive Committee, Washington DC   2,000
Teamsters Local 490, Vallejo   850
Machinists Lodge 1173, Concord   2,000
Assistance Plus - mail house, Fairfield   1,091
 Total Income   195,441
   
Independent Expenditures (* indicates won election)    
Candidate City Position  
Michael Wilson (*) Vallejo City Council 26,841
Erin Hannigan (*) Vallejo City Council 26,639
Pam Pitts Vallejo Mayor 34,675
Raymond Victor (*) Vallejo School Board 8,229
Rozanna Verder Aliga (*) Solano Co Board of Edu 2,298
Bill Whitney Benicia Mayor 15,976
Scott Strawbridge Benicia City Council 8,359
Mike Ioakimedes (*) Benicia City Council 8,359
Patricia Shamansky (*) Fairfield/Suisuin School Board 3,700
Helen Tilley (*) Fairfield/Suisuin School Board 3,700
Jack Abrohms Fairfield/Suisuin School Board 3,701
Teri Lamb Fairfield/Suisuin School Board 3,701
Chuck Timm (*) Fairfield City Council 2,941
  Total candidate independent expenditures   149,119
Other Expenditures    
David Bender   Polling 8,000
Reed Business Solutions   Accounting Serv 4,555
Pirayou Law Office   Legal 3,797
Shawnda Westly Consulting   Consulting 17,500
Other Expenditures   9,762
  Total other   43,614
Total expenditures   192,733
   
Source - FPPC filings forms 460 and 496    
   

  $1000 and over contributors


 

$1,000 and Over  
Contributors           Hannigan               Wilson             Schivley                Davis           Cloutier                  Pitts
 
Val Pac - Vallejo Chamber of Commerce 8,000 8,000  
Buck Kamphausen 3,000 3,000   11,000
Philip Elfstrom 3,000 3,775  
Thomas Hannigan 2,965  
Lightning Communications 2,859  
Burton for Sup of Public Inst 2,501  
Foster Lumber Yard 2,000 2,000  
SEIU United Healthcare Workers 555 1,208 1,708   2,500
Jim Gonzales 1,000  
United Assn Journeymen Plumbers/Steamfitters 1,000 1,000   2,500
Willie Brown 1,000  
IBEW Local 180 1,000 1,000  
Brian Clark & Assoc   1,091  
Thomas Wilson   1,150  
Mel Gomez & Robert Litwin   1,000  
Krishan Conley   2,055  
Shane Albers   3,000  
John Geisse   1,000  
Steven Kay   1,000   3,500  
Bill Mare   1,440  
Minuteman Press   1,197  
Singer & Assoc   1,500  
Eugene Stille - Nugget Market   2,500  
Eric Stille - Nugget Market   2,500  
Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund   2,500  
Katy Miessner   1,730  
Roy Weigel   1,975  
Peggy Bishop   1,570  
William Funchness   1,000  
Michael Sension   1,000  
Montezuma Wetlands   2,000  
Donald Hurt   1,400  
Eyvette Robinson   1,430  
Davenport's   1,000    
Joseph Blaney   1,000    
Georgia House Graphics   2,750    
Young Investments   2,000    
Margie Sabathia   1,000    
Earlene Coleman-Ali   1,000    
Davis & Davis   2,000    
Five Star Plumbing   1,000
Largo Concrete   1,000
Helix Electric   2,000
Jess Malgapo   1,000
Stephen Ball   1,000
Professional People Real Estate   1,500
Pamela Pitts   1,240
Johnny Thompson   2,100
Georgia Street Plaza   2,700
Ron Aquino   2,000
Galen Miller   5,000
Robert Krull   1,000
Chandler Designs   8,500
   
Total $1,000 and over contributions 29,533 30,779 2,637 15,580 19,775 46,040
Total Under $1,000 contributions 46,225 49,666 22,436 65,938 57,603 46,475
Total Contributions 75,758 80,445 25,073 81,518 77,378 92,515
 

Firefighters


  Amount Contributed to Campaign
Name Residence          Hannigan             Wilson                 Pitts                Total
 
John Ha Vacaville 250 250 500 1,000
Kevin Bellunonini Sebastapol 300 300 300 900
Scott DeHerrera Vacaville   200   200
James Rustice Napa 200 200 400 800
Kevin Hickey Novato 150 150 300 600
Tracy Bruner Napa 250   500 750
James Higgins Vacaville 250 250   500
Pamela Higgins Vacaville   500 500
Patrick Higgins Pleasant Hill 250 250 500 1,000
Steven Smircich Napa 200 200 400 800
Raymond Jackson Lafayette 200 100 100 400
L W Bohlig Crockett 250 250 200 700
Michael Brooks Vacaville 150 150 300 600
Shawn Core Benicia 125 125 250 500
Patrick Walsh Benicia 250 250 500 1,000
Harold Burnett Crockett 200 200 300 700
Kelly Baumgartner Benicia 100 100 100 300
Brandon Leitzke Vallejo   500 500
Melisse Leitzke Vallejo 250 250   500
Clifford Campbell Vacaville   250 250
Gilbert Baiz Vacaville 250 250 500 1,000
Richard Nelson Vallejo   300 300
Firefighters Local 1186 Vallejo 105   105
  Total   3,730 3,475 6,700 13,905
   

Summary

             
 
  City Council        
  Erin Michael   Joanne
        Osby          Gary                                           Pam
  Hannigan Wilson   Schivley         Davis      Cloutier                                            Pitts
 
Income  
Cash contributions 70,091 65,962  
  20,825 71,829 61,226 73,013
Non-cash contributions 5,667 14,483  
   4,248 9,689 16,152 19,502
  Total contributions 75,758 80,445  
  25,073 81,518 77,378 92,515
   
Expenditures  
Cash payments by candidate 67,738 74,877  
   24,298 65,854 74,015 56,412
Non cash by candidate 5,667 14,483  
   4,248 9,689 16,152 19,502
  Total expenditures by candidate 73,405 89,360  
   28,546 75,543 90,167 75,914
Expenditures - by United  
  Workers for Local Government 26,639 26,841  
0   0 0 34,675
   
Total expenditures 100,044 116,201  
   28,546 75,543 90,167 110,589
   
Candidate cash balance 12/31/07 2,353 955    
   3510 15,768 90 37,681
   
 
Note - expenses paid by United Workers for Local Government are classified as "Independent  
  Expenditures" and are not reported by the candidate.  
  United Workers For Local Government raised $195,441 for the 2007 elections and spent  
  $192,733 on candidates in Vallejo, Benicia, Fairfield and Solano County.  
  The largest contributors to United Workers for Local Government are:  
     Vallejo Firefighters Local 1186   79,500  
     Vallejo Police Officers Assn   33,000  
     California Teachers Assn   21,000  
     IBEW Local 180, Napa   13,500  
 
Source  
  Candidate FPPC forms 460 filed with Vallejo City Clerk  
  United Workers For Local Government FPPC forms 460 and 496 filed with California Secretary of State
  and local cities