If there's been any one theme to this year's Santa Fe mayoral race, it's been the role that political action committees have played in a publicly financed election.
As of Monday, PACs and outside organizations supporting Javier Gonzales for mayor spent at least $57,730.59 in the election—nearly as much as mayoral candidates are allowed to spend under the city's public campaign finance code. Those groups include the AFL-CIO-affiliated Working America, which has been sending door-knockers from Albuquerque to canvass for Gonzales, and Progressive Santa Fe. Another PAC, Santa Fe Working Families, reported nearly $2,000 in legal expenses related to a recent ethics complaint that failed to muster legal sufficiency.
And the Northern New Mexico Central Labor Council, which has been sponsoring a union member-to-member $11 an hour stipend program in support of Gonzales and other candidates, hasn't reported its expenses with the city.
Gonzales and mayoral contenders Patti Bushee and Bill Dimas each qualified for public campaign financing, which limits them to $60,000 each. As of Monday, Dimas had the most cash remaining at nearly $7,000. Bushee had $3,500 in the bank while Gonzales reported $2,300 left.
Vote for 9 For A Full Time Mayor, a PAC that's supporting a city charter amendment that would strengthen the mayor's political powers, reported spending $10,000. Its donors include city councilors Peter Ives and Rebecca Wurzburger as well as Somos Un Pueblo Unido Executive Director Marcela Diaz.
To look at the latest city election expenditure reports, click here.