In what so far is the richest race among 2016 Pinellas County public office candidates, property appraiser hopeful Mike Twitty now has a $50,000 fundraising lead over his lone opponent, Jim Frishe.
To date, Twitty has raised nearly $86,000, while Frishe has pulled in close to $36,000.
However, the Supervisor of Elections’ October finance reports show a month where the two candidate’s fundraising efforts were a little closer than their overall totals might suggest.
Twitty – a 48-year-old Republican and political newcomer with 25-years of general real estate appraisal experience – has brought in close to $16,000 for his campaign throughout October, the result of 75 unique contributions, six the maximum allowable $1,000.
Last month’s in-kind contributions to the Twitty camp – things like food and decorations for a fundraising event and printing materials for mailers – amounted to $1,795.
Most of Twitty’s October expenditures were paid to the St. Petersburg-based Poli Solutions Consulting, a little more than $780 went toward a reimbursement for party supplies, while another $750 went toward office supplies. Slightly more than $200 was paid to ECS LLC for St. Petersburg office space.
Frishe, on the other hand – a 66-year-old Republican and former state representative who himself is a 20-year licensed real estate broker – rounded-up almost $11,000 in contributions for his cause during the month.
His contributions came from 55 unique donations, two for the maximum allowable $1,000.
The only significant expenditures of Frishe’s in Oct. were about $1,500 on food and beverages. Some of that went toward a luncheon for campaign staff, but most went to a fundraising event held at the Birch and Vive Restaurant in downtown St. Petersburg.
Twitty has not only held the lead in the fundraising game, but also in terms of prominent endorsements, but Frishe has at least a couple heavy-hitters behind him. State Sen. Jack Latvala is listed on Frishe’s host committee, and Pinellas County Commission Chairman John Morroni is also a known contributor.
Other notable host committee members of Frishe’s include Gulfport City Councilman Dan Liedtke, Treasure Island Mayor Bob Minning, and former state Rep. Ed Hooper.
Twitty’s endorsers, meanwhile, include outgoing Pinellas Property Appraiser Pam Dubov, state Sen. Jeff Brandes, St. Petersburg Councilman-elect Ed Montanari, Pinellas County Clerk of the Court Ken Burke, former Pinellas County Commissioner Susan Latvala, and 2016 Pinellas County Commission Candidate Mike Mikurak.
The November fundraising figures will be filed with the Supervisor of Elections sometime at the beginning of December.
Pinellas County’s property appraiser job pays about $154,000 per year. The 2016 general election is Nov. 8.