Transparency Update August 11, 2017: Campaign Disclosure Nuance

  • How is X candidate able to afford so many political signs?
  • Why don’t I see more literature from Y candidate?
  • Who is funding Z candidates campaign?

Financial disclosures were submitted on the 8th of August, and they offer a window into each campaign. There is quite a lot of nuance to discover, and I’m going to share a few observations made at first glance- starting with my own financial disclosure.

Who contributed to my campaign?

I have eleven donors to my campaign. All donors are private parties – I have no corporate donors.

Who is my biggest campaign donor?

Melanya & Mnatsakan Zadikyan are my biggest campaign donors, having contributed $200 – who are they? They are my in-laws!

I have multiple family members who have contributed – Aaron Wright, Mary Halverson, and my mom Lisa (Frances) Wright. They are always supportive and give great feedback.

Two colleagues from the University of Utah’s department of Political Science donated – Zachary Stickney and Nadia Mahallati. I am honored to receive their support, and to be associate with them – they make me better as a scholar and person.

People whom I have met over the course of the campaign – either in person or virtually – also donated to the campaign. Darlene Thayne, Kathleen Dennis, Jesse Smith, Zig Sondelski, and Jeff Noall all donated – I can’t tell you how much this means, and it humbles and encourages me to keep campaigning our message of open governance and transparency.

Please note: it is difficult to express how grateful I am to my family for their support during this campaign. Although it isn’t shown on the financial disclosure, my family is my greatest “donor”- thank you Hripsime, Noah, and Hayk.

How did I spend campaign dollars?

This is a great question! I registered my domain with godaddy ($15.41); paid an application fee to run for office to Bountiful City ($25.00); and purchased a voter list from the Davis County Clerk (57.87).

I also purchased signs from Renaissance Signs Marketing & Design ($233.79); door hangers from Vistaprint ($109.47); and made some photo cards to pass out at events from the Walmart Photo Center ($30.00).   Here you can see the door hanger, pass along card, yard sign, and two really handsome kids:

 

In total I have received $700 in donations, and have spent $471.54. These next few days are crucial to the campaign and I will make the most of every dollar donated.

Here’s my full financial disclosure:

 

There is a lot of nuance in a campaign financial disclosure (as seen in my own). To see all Bountiful campaign financial disclosures, visit https://www.bountifulutah.gov/Election-Information

I invite residents to look at all the disclosures and ask the same questions I did:

  • Who contributed to the campaign?
  • Who is the biggest campaign donor?
  • How were campaign dollars spent?
  • How does X candidate’s spending compare to other candidates?

Let’s explore for example:

 How does my spending compare to other candidates?

 Bountiful City Council Candidates Spending:

  • Kenny Knighton                                $10,767.79
  • Chris Simonsen                                 $6,106.54
  • Bret Hutchings                                  $1,714.25
  • Kendalyn Keyes Harris                    $1,682.62
  • Clint Halladay                                    $1,350.93
  • Mason Mulligan                                 $780.12
  • Seth Wright                                         $471.54
  • Alex Densley                                        $225.00

How much money have mayoral candidates spent?

Bountiful Mayoral Candidates Spending:

  • Randy C. Lewis                                  $12,212.48
  • Jim Clark                                             $5,646.94
  • John Pitt                                               $4,400.19
  • Nicholas Dean Price                          $2,838.17
  • Dean Collinwood                               $2,439.53
  • Bob Lindsay                                        $1,333.87

I submit that campaign disclosures offer windows into how candidates may later make decisions as elected officials. Agree? Disagree? Comment or e-mail me – I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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