Menlo Park council candidates report campaign finances
The first campaign finance reports of the Menlo Park City Council election show certain organizations and residents lined up behind one or the other camp of candidates running for three open seats on the council.
One camp supports the current majority on the council and is made up of incumbents Lee Duboc and Mickie Winkler, and newcomer John Boyle. Among their key supporters are real estate interests.
Members of the other camp say they are running independent campaigns but they are united in their opposition to the majority. The "opponents" are Heyward Robinson, Richard Cline and Vincent Bressler. Two of these candidates, Robinson and Cline, are backed by a union that represents city employees; all three received donations from supporters of the Derry condo-commercial project referendum.
Heyward Robinson led all candidates with $14,538 in monetary donations from Jan. 1 to Sept. 30, according to campaign finance reports filed Oct. 5.
Mr. Robinson has a slight edge over John Boyle and incumbents Lee Duboc and Mickie Winkler, who have raised $13,939, $12,524 and $11,217, respectively.
Mr. Cline and Mr. Bressler received $7,250 and $6,556, respectively.
Most of the candidates have also lent funds to their own campaigns. Ms. Duboc lent herself $9,580; Mr. Cline, $5,000; Mr. Boyle, $3,000; Ms. Winkler, $2,000; and Heyward Robinson, $1,000.
Mr. Bressler gave $500 to his campaign through a monetary donation, not a loan.
Each of the three "majority" candidates — Boyle, Duboc and Winkler — received donations of $2,500 from the California Real Estate Political Action Committee, a committee tied to the Los Angeles-based California Association of Realtors.
The three candidates also each received $1,000 from Howard Crittenden, a real estate broker and owner of the Park Theatre building; $500 from Art Flegel, founder of Flegel's Home Furnishings; $500 from Tod Spieker, a Palo Alto-based real estate agent; and $250 from Byron Brill, the property manager for Freestone Property Inc.
Architect Sam Sinnott also donated $249 of office rent to each of the three candidates.
During the 2002 election, then-candidates Duboc, Winkler and Nicholas Jellins vowed to not take contributions from developers due to criticism candidates have faced in past elections for doing so. The "majority" candidates say they are not making that pledge this year, but they have agreed to not seek the endorsement or financial support of labor unions, specifically the Service Employees International Union Local 715, which represents the city's non-safety employees.
Ms. Duboc said the decision was made to "avoid a conflict of interest" as employee negotiations take place "behind closed doors."
In 2002, SEIU Local 715 endorsed candidates Duboc, Jellins and Winkler.
Also backing the "majority" are former councilman Raymond "Dee" Tolles and Reginald Rice, a member of the city's transportation commission. They each contributed $200 to each of the three "majority" candidates. A residents' group, Citizens for Unobstructed Traffic, also donated $241 to each of the three candidates.
Mr. Boyle and Ms. Duboc each received $500 from the Lincoln Club of Northern California, a Burlingame-based Republican political action committee.
The largest non-monetary contribution was provided to Menlo Park Matters, a residents' group that supports the "majority" candidates of Boyle, Duboc and Winkler. The group has received $10,330 in contributions — $6,000 of which represents the value of polling services donated by the San Francisco-based firm, Dresner, Wickers and Associates LLC. The firm polled Menlo Park voters by telephone in September.
Candidates Bressler, Cline and Robinson — the three candidates who oppose the "majority" — have received donations from the supporters of the Derry condo-commercial project referendum, including Morris Brown, who gave $325 to each candidate, and David Speer, who gave $500 to candidates Bressler and Cline, and $100 to Mr. Robinson.
Mr. Speer, a council candidate in 2002, is also listed as the treasurer for Menlo Park On Track, a residents' group that donated $152 to each of the three "opponents."
Former councilman Paul Collacchi, a frequent opponent of Ms. Duboc and Ms. Winkler, gave $250 to Mr. Cline and Mr. Robinson, and also lent Mr. Cline $1,000.
Not included in Mr. Cline's or Mr. Robinson's finance reports are any contributions by local unions. SEIU Local 715 has endorsed both candidates, but the union is conducting its own campaigning, rather than donating funds to particular council members, according to SEIU spokespeople.
Other key contributions to Mr. Robinson are: $2,000 from his mother, Susan Robinson of Charleston, South Carolina; $500 from California state Controller Steve Westly; $942 from John and Roberta Carcione of Menlo Park; plus $3,200 in non-monetary contributions.
Mr. Cline received $1,500 from his father-in-law, Luigi Pietrantoni of San Leandro.
Below are the other donations of $200 or more listed on the six candidates' campaign finance forms filed last week. The candidates are listed in alphabetical order. The information includes donors' names, cities of residence, occupations, and amounts contributed.
• John Boyle: Russ Hall, Menlo Park, venture capitalist, $500; William Hooper, Menlo Park, self-employed, $500; Julie Brody, Atherton, volunteer, $300; Nick Naclerio, Menlo Park, electrical consultant, $300; Cassius Kirk, Menlo Park, retired $250; Kimberly LeMieux, Menlo Park, Laurel Homes, Inc. $250; Randy Merk, Menlo Park Investment executive $250; Michael Stoner, Menlo Park, developer, $250; Bruce Ochieano, Menlo Park, financial advisor, $200.
• Vincent Bressler: Nona Bressler, Murray, UT, retired, $500; Robert English, Menlo Park, technical director, $500; Elias Blawie, Menlo Park, attorney, $300; Chuck Bernstein, Menlo Park, educator, $250; Charles Bourne, Menlo Park, retired, $250; Don Brawner, Menlo Park, landlord, $250; Ross Wilson, Menlo Park, electrical engineer $250.
• Richard Cline: Elias Blawie, Menlo Park, attorney, $300; Diane Savage, Menlo Park, attorney, $300; Chuck Bernstein, educator, $250; Charles Bourne, Menlo Park, retired, $250; Don Brawner, Menlo Park, landlord, $250; Margot Lockwood, realtor, $200; Elton Sherwin, Menlo Park, venture capitalist, $200; Jane Williams, Menlo Park, chief executive officer of Hand Held Advisors, $200.
• Lee Duboc: Robert Duboc Sr., Kansas City, MO, retired, $500; Boyd Smith, Palo Alto, WSS Properties, $500; Nick Farwell, Menlo Park, retired, $400; Nicholas Naclerio, Menlo Park, electrical consultant, $300; B. Michael Anderson, Menlo Park, retired, $250; Richard Burress, Palo Alto, retired, $250; California Women's Leadership Association, Fullerton, CA, political action committee, $250; Monica Corman, Menlo Park, Realtor, $250; Cassius Kirk, Menlo Park, volunteer, $250; Kim LeMieux, Laurel Homes, Inc., $250; Nancy Davidson, Menlo Park, retired, $200; John Inglis, Jr., Menlo Park, vice president of Wedbush Morgan Securities, $200; George Liddle, Menlo Park, former councilman, $200; Bruce and Anita Ochieano, Menlo Park, self-employed, $200.
• Heyward Robinson: Robert English, Menlo Park, technical director, $500; Susan Ravenel, Charleston, SC, homemaker, $500; Irene Searles, Menlo Park, homemaker, $470; Mitchel Slomiak, Menlo Park, consulting CFO, $380; Elias Blawie, Menlo Park, attorney, $300; Bennett Johnston, Sausalito, entrepreneur, $300; Diana Ekedahl, Menlo Park, retired, $250; Robert Ekedahl, Menlo Park, retired, $250; Rob Friedman, San Diego, physician, $250; Karen Grove, Menlo Park, homemaker, $250; Jordan Gruber, Menlo Park, writer, $250; Elizabeth Houck, Menlo Park, product manager, $250; Jim Madison, Menlo Park, lawyer, $250; David McLaughlin, Menlo Park, attorney, $250; James Tooley, Menlo Park, engineer, $250; Jane Aaron Ttee, Menlo Park, writer, $250; Kristin Vais, Menlo Park, none, $250 Eric Arons, San Francisco, SRI engineer, $200; Caroline Ellerbe, Latta, SC, homemaker, $200; Honor Fullerton Stone, Menlo Park, physician, $200.
• Mickie Winkler: Louis Deziel, Menlo Park, marketing consultant, $500; Robert Anderson, Menlo Park, retired, $300; G. Nicholas Farwell, investment company employee, $300; Nicholas Naclerio, Menlo Park, electrical consultant, $300; B. Michael Anderson, Menlo Park, retired, $250; Patrick Corman, Menlo Park, self employed, $250; Cassius L. Kirk Jr., Menlo Park, retired, $250; Tom and Kim LeMieux, Menlo Park, Laurel Homes, Inc., $250; Peter Edmonds, Menlo Park, retired, $200; Bruce Ochieano, Menlo Park, financial advisor, $200; Michael Stoner, Menlo Park, developer, $200; Adam Winkler, San Mateo, engineer, $200.