Spending pays off for city candidates
Political campaigns cost money, even in Grass Valley.
The two winners of the most recent race for Grass Valley City Council, Patti Ingram and Gerard Tassone, spent the most to keep a seat on the City Council, campaign records show.
According to campaign disclosure statements, Ingram, the current mayor, spent $9,497.
Tassone, who was running for the fifth time, spent $5,116.
They spent the most on printing and mailers, both said Thursday.
“Those things add up,” said Ingram, who had hoped to spend less than $6,000. “It cost more to do that kind of business,” she said.
Tassone, who spent $4,474 on his last campaign in 1998, is also amazed at the cost of campaigning. He spent $1,297 out of his own pocket, campaign records show.
“You have to spend more money now,” said Tassone, who remembers spending less than $100 on his second campaign. “Times have changed.”
Grass Valley has grown, there are a lot of new people, and walking the neighborhoods is really the key to winning, he said.
Walking saves a lot of money, he added. “It’s fun, too.”
He walked one to two hours every day and from noon to 6 p.m. on Sundays during the month of October, he said.
The three other unsuccessful candidates – Thomas Reagan, Newell Taylor and Lisa Swarthout – said they raised either no money or spent less than $1,000 and did not have to file campaign disclosure forms. They will have to file forms stating they spent less than $1,000.
Swarthout, who spent a record $9,600 on her unsuccessful race for City Council in 1998, spent less than $500 this time, she said. Swarthout now serves on the Grass Valley Planning Commission.
Taylor said he spent $750, and Reagan said he raised no money.
The three other members of the City Council are Vice Mayor DeVere Mautino, Councilman Steve Enos and Councilwoman Linda Stevens.
Mayors are paid $300 a month and members of the city council are paid $275 a month.
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