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The Transparency Project offers this summary of candidate and PAC contributions affecting the 2016 Santa Monica election.

For City Council, the total money raised by all candidates (including loans and PAC contributions) was $242,651, which collectively is less than the top two spenders in the 2014 election. The City Council race has been unusual, with four incumbents, Tony Vazquez, Ted Winterer, Gleam Davis, and Terry O’Day, vastly out raising their challengers. The power of incumbency looms large this election and may be in part responsible for the fact that the average total donation amount among incumbents is $34,230. To date, Ted Winterer raised the most ($54,485); Tony Vazquez raised the least ($25,067) with Winterer, Davis, and Vazquez receiving $19,199 and O’Day $16,922 in independent expenditures from PACs. Three City PACs – Santa Monica Police Officers Association, Coalition of Santa Monica City Employees and Santa Monica Firefighters Political Activities, endorsed incumbents. The only other candidate in the money, out of 11 candidates is Armen Melkonians who raised $10,695. Fundraising numbers among all Council Members candidates are impressive considering that city law limits contributions to individual candidates at $340 per individual.

The Rent Control Board race is unusually competitive, a rare event for Rent Control candidates, who typically run unopposed. Four candidates are running for two open seats.

Challenger Caroline Torosis and appointed incumbent Anastasia Foster, who are running together as a slate, raised over $12,000 individually and received nearly $15,000 from PACs supporting their candidacy. The other challenger, Elaine Golden-Gealer, has a loan of $16,084 and $830 in donations. Incumbent Christopher Walton raised no money in support of his campaign.

Money has flowed in the College Board race, which unlike City Council and the Rent Control Board, imposes no contribution limits on its candidates. First-time challenger cardiologist Sion Roy raised $60,790, including $21,250 in PAC contributions, with major donations from the California Medical Association PAC and the Los Angeles County Medical Association PAC. Incumbents Susan Aminoff, Margaret Quinones-Perez, and Rob Rader are running together, receiving collectively from loans, donations and PACs over $100,000, and with Quinones-Perez receiving $20,000 from the Santa Monica College Faculty Assoc. PAC.

Lastly, the School Board race has proven to be the most predictable of this season.

School Board candidates will be elected without a formal ballot vote this year as only three candidates have qualified for three seats. Although candidates have not launched formal campaigns for School Board, newcomer Jon Kean raised over $20,000 in anticipation of what might have been a competitive race had a challenger appeared.