WatchSonoma Watch

Campaign reports reveal geographic split in supes race

John Sawyer and Susan Gorin


The two Santa Rosa-based candidates who are seeking to replace retiring Sonoma County Supervisor Valerie Brown have opened up sizeable fundraising leads over their opponents, according to new disclosures filed Thursday.

The campaign finance reports reveal a geographic split between the candidates for the 1st District supervisorial seat, which takes in Sonoma Valley, the city of Sonoma and parts of eastern Santa Rosa.

Santa Rosa councilman John Sawyer has raked in $52,242 since Jan. 1, making him the fundraising leader to date. That amount does not include nearly $10,000 in non-monetary contributions made to Sawyer’s campaign during that period, records show.

Sawyer spent $21,528, leaving him with a balance of $31,563, records show.

Santa Rosa councilwoman Susan Gorin reported having $34,381 on hand.

She raised $34,957 since Jan. 1, excluding $4,154 in non-monetary contributions, records show. Previously, Gorin loaned her campaign $10,000. She reported that she has spent $19,876 since Jan. 1.

“We’re excited about our fundraising,” Gorin said Thursday. “The campaign has really received a broad base of support.”

The money raised by Gorin and Sawyer dwarfs the amounts taken in by their rivals based in Sonoma Valley.

Of those, Gina Cuclis, a Boyes Hot Springs communications consultant, collected the most with $18,659, plus an additional $3,632 in non-monetary contributions.

Cuclis reported having $15,424 on hand at the start of the year. Minus expenses, she currently has $19,893, records show.

Sonoma Valley energy consultant Mark Bramfitt, who earned Brown’s endorsement, took in $4,600 since Jan. 1, records show. That was added to $18,577 that Bramfitt had on hand prior to this reporting period.

Minus expenses of $9,193, Bramfitt reported having a current cash balance of $13,983.

Reports for Sonoma Mayor Joanne Sanders and Michael McClure, a Glen Ellen special education teacher, were not available on Thursday. Candidates could mail them to county election officials so long as the package was post-marked by Thursday.

The reports available on Thursday also revealed a clear geographic split in terms of campaign donors.

Nearly all of the donors to the campaigns of Cuclis and Bramfitt live in Sonoma Valley. By contrast, the bulk of donations to Gorin and Sawyer were from people living in Santa Rosa.

Sawyer also received the largest individual donations of any of the candidates: $2,650 each from the California Real Estate Political Action Committee, the Sonoma County Alliance and from Joseph Dutton, owner of Dutton Ranch Corp. in Sebastopol.

In the 5th District supervisor’s race, Sonoma County supervisor Efren Carrillo maintained his comfortable fundraising lead in his bid for re-election.

Carrillo started the year with $101,748 in the bank and raised an additional $1,981 since January. He spent $15,759, leaving him with a balance of $87,969, campaign finance records show.

Carrillo’s take included a $250 donation from Martinelli Ranches in Forestville, and $100 each from individuals with Hospital Housekeeping Systems in Austin, Tex., and Sunny Hills Services in San Anselmo.

Veronica Jacobi trailed far behind. Records show she raised $6,555 since Jan. 1, the bulk of that amount — $6,400 — in the form of a personal loan. Jacobi spent $2,689, leaving her with $3,866.

Former supervisor Ernie Carpenter also is challenging Carrillo for the 5th District seat. Records show he raised $7,511, which includes a personal loan of $2,511.

Carpenter reported having $5,100 on hand, an amount he labeled “puny” compared to Carrillo’s war chest, which Carpenter dismissed as “developer-related.”

“I’m not going to compete with him on money,” Carpenter said Thursday. “I’m going to compete with him on issues.”

Supervisor Shirlee Zane, who is seeking re-election in the 3rd District, raised $8,300 since Jan. 1, which she added to the $49,767 she already had in the bank.

Zane spent $11,888 this reporting period, leaving her with $47,170, records show.

Zane’s major contributors included donations of $1,000 each from Kendall-Jackson Winery and from Larry Wasem, managing general partner of the Airport Business Center.

Tim Smith, who is vying to unseat Zane, raised $3,470 since Jan. 1, almost all of that — $3,000 — in the form of a personal loan. He spent $2,352, leaving him with $1,117 on hand.

The Sonoma County Law Enforcement Association reported donations to three candidates, the largest of which was $2,500 given to Sawyer.

Zane and Mike McGuire each received $500 from the association’s political action committee.

Neither McGuire or Supervisor David Rabbitt are facing election this year.


Editors Note: A previous version of this story incorrectly reported that Supervisor Efren Carrillo received $100 donations from Sunny Hills Services in San Anselmo and Hospital Housekeeping Systems of Austin, Tex. The donations were individual contributions made by employees of those organizations.

9 Responses to “Campaign reports reveal geographic split in supes race”

  1. StopBoscosCorruptCronies says:

    Corrupt Sonoma County, California Supervisors, Ernie Carpenter & Efren Carillo, Wholly Engineered by Sugar Daddy, Former Congressman, DOUGLAS H. BOSCO!

    Solid Waste Climate Protection Campaign

    Doug Bosco, Ernie Carpenter

    Supes OK tasting room on Sonoma coast

    Carrillo it seems is in the developer’s pocket, but shame on you Shirley. … For those of you who didn’t attend the hearing Doug Bosco is the vineyards lawyer! … Money continues to talk – shame on you Efren & Shirley.

    Doug Bosco & His Phantom Railroad

    An entirely greater level of political interference is manifestly run on behalf of Bosco and allied financial interests by many members of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors. As only one example, the precocious political career of present Fifth District Supervisor Efren Carillo was wholly engineered by people like Bosco and former Fifth District Supervisor Eric Koenigshofer, an attorney and long-standing member in good faith of the Bosco Boys. In the final weeks of the race, Carillo’s campaign received a virtually unheard-of campaign donation of $23,500 from none other than Bosco’s Northwestern Pacific Railroad business partner, Skip Berg, by way of his company Berg Holdings. Syar, the gravel mining company, gave over $8,000. Bosco himself chipped in $5,000. Carillo’s opponent, long-time Sonoma County public servant Rue Furch, ran on a platform opposing many of the Bosco Boys’ pet projects.

    Doug Bosco & His Phantom Railroad

  2. Larry says:

    John Sawyer never met a water, tax or salary hike he did not like. The last think we need in Sonoma County government is another big spender sucking up the #160,000 a year Supervisor Salary. As far as I am concerned, we the taxpayer, should make the County Supervisor’s position part time like it used to be in the 90′s, decrease their salary to something like the Sonoma County Medium Income (less than $60,000) and reduce their benefit packages to suit.

  3. Mr. PepperSpray PIKE says:

    A quick question for Truth in News. Do you agree that the four New York cops who were just fired for shooting an UN-armed man 50 times was the right thing to do? Or, was that merely a “liberal” plot of some kind?


  4. Fast Track says:

    Both Gorin and Sawyer are flawed candidates. Both are too liberal, Gorin is left of liberal. Neither have distinguished themselves on the Santa Rosa City Council.

    Gorin is off the wall and Sawyer appears to be too shy to be in politics.

    Choosing between these two is like choosing between a Big Mac and a Burger King, both are very bad for you, but you are hungry and you eat the Big Mac.

    Sawyer is a little like the Big Mac, not good for you but better than the alternative.

  5. Esther says:

    “…art and other non-essential junk.” Art is non-essential junk? Wow, where do you even begin to talk to someone with such views?

    Start with Sir Ken Robinson: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLi-vJSNP6U&feature=related

    Using art to make better doctors: http://www.boston.com/ae/theater_arts/articles/2008/07/20/monet_gauguin_using_art_to_make_better_doctors/?page=full

  6. Missy says:

    We need our PD, what we need to do is get rid of the high salaries of the people on the board. Should they make $300k a year for sitting and making decisions? I think not.

  7. truth in news says:

    Just keep voting in the liberals and cutting police. Then after the liberals YOU put in office take your guns…we can have a little more realistic chat on your rights as the people you have decided to feed with social services come to take all your stuff!

  8. Money Grubber says:

    Law enforcement in Sonoma County is way overstaffed.

    We don’t need the farce of a “bomb squad.”

    We don’t need the farce of “Henry 1″ when the CHP helicopter is available nearby.

    And we don’t need to continue funding an army of cops as the crime rate continues to drop year after year.

    The roads are crumbling. The bridges are in disrepair. The street lights are being turned out. The fools cannot even put a sidewalk in outside of a brand new school without sniveling lame excuses.

    And you notice that at the state level, rather than cut back on the bonehead fluff courses at the CSU system, they threaten to shut out new students come next year. Gotta keep those public employee jobs… even teachers for golf and art and other non-essential junk.

  9. Shocking says:

    The Santa Rosa Police Department gets a sweetheart deal while the city faces $100 million in unfunded pension costs.

    Miraculously the County Law Enforcement PAC makes a generous contribution to John Sawyer who just happens to be running for the B.O.S and who just happens to be one of the city council members who also supported that sweetheart deal.

    That is a shocking coincidence.

    All the way to the bank….