Money talks

Early in her campaign, Maureen Kirk said she didn’t expect to raise as much money as her principal opponent, Steve Bertagna, in the race for District 3 county supervisor. So far, though, she’s held her own.

By May 20, she’d raised $43,571, just $2,978 less than Bertagna’s $46,549, according to campaign disclosure statements filed May 25.

Kirk has spent less than Bertagna, $21,215 as opposed to his $27,167, leaving her with a cash advantage of $2,974 as of May 20. However, candidates traditionally raise much of their money during the final reporting period, which in this case is from May 21 to election day, June 6.

The third candidate in the race, political novice Chuck Kutz, reports that he raised just $2,475, including $500 he lent his own campaign.

Although Kirk has received the endorsement of the Butte County Farm Bureau, Bertagna has had more success in raising money from the farming community. James M. Palva, who owns a farm and a hulling business, was the largest single contributor, donating a total of $10,500.

Bertagna also received a number of donations from construction and other development companies, including $2,000 from developer Tony Symmes and $2,500 from Stephen Schuster, owner of Schuster Homes.

Kirk raised $6,550 from the ag community, including $1,500 from the Farm Bureau and a total of $4,700 from Chico Nut Co. and owner Peter D. Peterson. Her largest single donation was $9,634 from the Chico Greenline Coalition, a group that supports the Greenline and preserving agricultural land.

In the only other hotly contested race, incumbent Sheriff Perry Reniff has raised $33,233, while his opponent, businessman and Police Academy instructor Don Hutcheson, has raised $17,225—$14,725 of that in the form of loans he made to his campaign.

Reniff listed two $1,000 donations from the Mooretown Rancheria. His other major contributors, all donating $500, were mostly retirees, small business owners, and government employees. The exception was Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey, who donated a $954 gift certificate to the Chico Enterprise-Record.

Hutcheson’s largest contribution—$700—came from Mary Ann Tuck, a licensed vocational nurse from Chico.