Over the first two and a half months of 2012, donors gave a total of $79,896 to the eight candidates running for the District 4 seat on the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, according to campaign finance reports provided by the county Elections Office.
Although the candidates represent districts, they run-county wide, and that can be expensive. Among the expenses: buying a refined list of likely voters, and hiring a campaign consultant who can develop an effective strategy.
With turnout expected to be low in the June election, candidates focus on the 100,000 or so people expected to vote in a county of 333,000 registered voters. Impressing those likely voters with key endorsements from elected officials is seen as crucial.
In the June election, if none of the eight candidates in the District 4 race gets more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two voter-getters run again in November, when the presidential race will attract a far larger voter turnout.
The District 4 seat is now occupied by Rose Jacobs Gibson, who is termed out. The district includes Menlo Park, Redwood City, East Palo Alto and unincorporated North Fair Oaks and Oak Knoll.
Running unopposed for re-election in their districts are incumbent supervisors Dave Pine and Adrienne Tissier.
Shelly Masur, a member of the Redwood City School Board, continues to lead in fundraising. She has raised $60,940, including $32,738 during the most recent reporting period, Jan. 1 to March 17.
Kirsten Keith, the mayor of Menlo Park, joined the race in early February and has raised $15,342. She also lent her campaign $10,000.
Guillermo "Memo" Morantes, a member of the county Board of Education, has raised $23,997, and has lent his campaign an additional $25,000.
Warren Slocum, the former San Mateo County chief elections officer and assessor-county clerk-recorder, joined the contest in early March and has raised $10,950.
Carlos Romero, a member of the East Palo Alto City Council, has raised $6,450 and lent his campaign an additional $35,000.
Ernesto "Ernie" Schmidt, a Redwood City planning commissioner, has raised a total of $12,299.
Andy Cohen, a member of the Menlo Park City Council, joined the race in early February and has raised $1,610, and lent his campaign an additional $8,000.
David E. Woods, a member of the East Palo Alto City Council, has raised a total of $1,000.
Three candidates spent money on political consultants: $23,300 spent by Mr. Morantes, $6,250 by Mr. Schmidt, and $4,000 by Ms. Masur.
The eight candidates for District 4 collected contributions from 203 donors during the first three months of the year. Some of the better-known donors are listed below. (A more complete list will be posted on AlmanacNews.com.)
■ For Shelly Masur: Woodside investment manager Ken Fisher gave $1,000, while San Mateo County Supervisor Don Horsley gave $500 from his 2010 campaign fund. Former Menlo Park mayor Heyward Robinson gave $250.
■ For Kirsten Keith: Property developer David Bohannon gave $1,000. Former county supervisor Mike Nevin of Daly City gave $500, as did Menlo Park architect Sam Sinnott. Former council members Lee Duboc and Dee Tolles each gave $250; Menlo Park Fire Protection District board member Robert Silano gave $200; former councilman Chuck Kinney, community activist Henry Riggs and Stanford University spokesman Larry Horton each gave $100; and Councilwoman Kelly Fergusson gave $50.
■ For Warren Slocum: Former deputy assessor Terry Flinn of San Mateo gave $1,000. Former county controller Tom Huening gave $500.
■ For Carlos Romero: Portola Valley Mayor Maryann Moise Derwin gave $1,000. Giving $100 each were former Menlo Park mayors Mary Jo Borak and Steve Schmidt.