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Jerry Demings, Rob Panepinto report January campaign money in Orange County mayoral race

With Bill Sublette out of the running now, Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings and Winter Park Rob Panepinto continued their dual for campaign money in the Orange County mayoral race, with Demings reporting more than $43,000 in January donations, and Panepinto, almost $37,000.

Another major candidate, Orange County Commissioner Pete Clarke, has not yet posted or announced his campaign finance reports for January, yet Demings and Panepinto already were were pulling well ahead of Clarke prior to the month, and now Demings’ campaign has raised more than $480,000, and Panepinto’s, more than $350,000. Sublette, the Orange County School Board chairman, had offered a strong third-run for mayoral race campaign money, but unexpectedly dropped out of the race last month.

Demings’ official campaign brought in $28,772 in January, according to the Orange County Supervisor of Elections website, while his independent political committee, Orange County Citizens for Smart Growth, received $15,000 in donations, according to the Florida Division of Elections website.

Panepinto’s campaign reports have not yet been posted on either website, but his campaign announced Thursday it had raised $26,680 in January, while his independent political committee, Vision Orange County, raised $10,250.

“I am overwhelmed by and tremendously grateful for the support we are receiving from across the County,” Panepinto stated in a news release issued by his campaign. “Momentum continues to build for our campaign because creating higher wage jobs, expanding affordable housing options, building a world class infrastructure, and continuing to help those most in need requires experience that is simply not found in politics or government today.”


To date, Demings’ campaign fund reported raising $354,550, and finished January with $315,202 in the bank, while Orange County Citizens For Smart Growth reported raising $126,600 so far, and has $125,040 left in the bank.

Panepinto’s campaign reported it has raised $246,815 to date, though it did not specify how much of that was left after expenses. His campaign also reported that his independent political committee Vision Orange County has raised $103,649 so far.


Written By

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at

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