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Laurie Smith leads in campaign cash
• Candidates file finance statements
three running ceres

Laurie Smith leads the pack in raising campaign cash in the race for the District 1 Ceres City Council seat with a reported $9,997.09 to spend.

Smith is one of three candidates for the vacant seat, which will be decided on Aug. 31 with an all-mail ballot election. Also running are Jim Casey and Connie Vazquez. All three candidates filled out the campaign finance reporting forms as required by the state Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) for the period of Jan. 1 to July 17.

Vasquez reported having $2,650 in campaign contributions from various donors.

James Casey reported having $2,000 in campaign cash, consisting of $1,800 of his own money and $200 from Edward Mageean of Oakdale.

Smith’s campaign committee reported receiving contributions of $1,000 each from Esan Khacho of Modesto and Dawn Kinney of Merced; $500 each from the Mike Kline family, Dwane Jantz, both of Ceres, and Steven Rank of Modesto. Cathy Jantz, Try Us Transportation of Ceres, Jaswinder Kaur of Turlock, Chadha Construction of Ceres and Rupinder Dhillon of Tracy each donated $240 to Smith’s campaign. GFF & R of Modesto donated $300. Donations of $200 each came from James Zopolos of Merced, and Dalvir Singh Khunkhun and Nirmal Dhariwal, both of Ceres. Donations were given to Smith’s campaign by two former Ceres mayors – Chris Vierra who donated $250 and Eric Ingwerson with  $150. Lee and Shelia Brandt gave Smith’s campaign $100 as did Bob Quintella, a city of Modesto manager, and Gold Management, Inc., of Kirksville, Mo.

Smith reported receiving non-monetary contributions of $1,078.75 in campaign yard signs supplied by Parson’s Embroidery Plus of Ceres; $1,500 from Todd Aaronson of Modesto for website development and flyer design; and $520.20 from herself for food expenses for a meet and greet event and $103.14 for sign installation supplies.

Smith paid $1,000 to the city for the filing fee; $250 to ABS Direct for a list of registered voters residing in District 1; and $647.12 for six larger campaign signs from Jason’s Mobile Decal.

Casey reported spending $1,075.14 with Gowan’s Printing and $614.89 with the Sign Depot of Modesto. That left him with a balance of $309.97 as of Wednesday, July 21.

The $2,650 in campaign contributions in Vasquez’s account came from a variety of donors, including $1,000 from Sukhvinder Sanhu of 7-Eleven, $500 from Hameed Alsareh of George’s Gas and Grill, $500 from Brian Peterson of the Ceres Police Officers Association, Ronnie Samra of Mr. Taquito, and $100 apiece from Jose Navarro of Xpress Heating and Air, Nancy Hinton of Modesto and Jessica Pulido of Ceres.

She spent $1,328.78 to an Austin, Texas sign manufacturer for campaign signs, $181.20 with Home Depot for pipes and stakes for large signs and $62.50 for Visual Horizons Custom Signs for yard sign stakes. She was left with $827.82 in her campaign account.