Atherton council race: Dobbie way out front in fundraising
The special election for the Atherton City Council is two months away, and one candidate has already done some serious fundraising.
Jim Dobbie, a member of the town's Planning Commission and the chair of the general plan committee, raised more than $4,500 in campaign contributions for the June 3 election. That's about nine times as much as his competitor for the vacant council seat, general plan committee member Elizabeth Lewis.
Campaign finance reports were filed last week by the two candidates. The reports, which cover fundraising and campaign spending from January 1 through March 17, show that Mr. Dobbie amassed $4,534 in donations, while Ms. Lewis raised $496.
Mr. Dobbie's campaign reports having spent more than half of its funds, leaving $1,723 in the bank. Those expenditures include more than $400 for signs and stickers, almost $1,100 for envelope and letter printing services, and a total of $925 in postage.
Ms. Lewis' campaign reported that it did not spend any campaign funds.
Mr. Dobbie's biggest contributors to date are Hermann and I.S. Christensen, who each gave $900. The next biggest contributors are Casper Offutt, with $500, and Sandy Crittenden, with $300. Mervin and Roslyn Morris gave $250. All of Mr. Dobbie's listed donors are Atherton residents.
Ms. Lewis reported a $100 donation from Bob Jenkins, a real estate broker and a director of the Atherton Civic Interest League. She received $99 contributions from four sources: former Atherton City Council members Dianne and John Fisher; former Planning Commission member Rose Hau; her campaign treasurer, Atherton resident Sharon Shenk; and Maryann and Steve Ackley, Atherton residents who were entangled last year in a dispute over expired building permits for their home on Belbrook Way.
The special election is being held to fill the council seat vacated by Alan Carlson, who moved out of Atherton in December. There will be another Atherton council election in November, when the terms of Jim Janz and Kathy McKeithen expire.