Former Tampa City Council member John Dingfelder is stomping his competition in the money race to secure his old job. The Tampa attorney has raised more than $100,000 so far for his comeback effort, more than doubling his closest opponent.
Dingfelder, who left Council in 2010, served a stint representing the ACLU during the 2012 Republican National Convention. Buoying his campaign coffers is $55,000 in personal loans, including $5,000 during the latest reporting period covering the first 18 days of January, according to reports on the Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections website.
Dingfelder is running for the District 3 citywide seat.
Even with his own loans, Dingfelder’s fundraising efforts still slightly outmatched Stephen Lytle, who raised about $50,000.
However, it’s Nicholas Glover who seems to have the campaign momentum. Dingfelder raised just $1,800 during the latest campaign finance reporting period, plus a $5,000 personal loan. Lytle raised $2,000.
Glover, on the other hand, raked in $9,000. Still, that brings Glover’s total campaign haul to just $29,000.
January spending has been quiet. Dingfelder didn’t report any campaign expenditures while other candidates limited spending to things like consulting fees, the county qualifying fee and yard signs. Lytle was the only candidate to qualify by petition, which means he didn’t have to fork out the $2,800 qualifying fee.
Lytle spent $7,600 including $3,000 to Scott Pollen for social media consulting, $400 to Jeffrey Rivera for get-out-the-vote consulting and $2,500 to Good Guy Signs for yard signs.
Glover spent the most — $13,000 — including $3,000 to SEA Polling, $3,250 to Jordan Pride and $3,300 to Blue Ticket Consulting for campaign management.
Vibha Shevade, a real estate small-business owner and former speech therapist, rounds out the race. She raised just $847 during the last reporting period, bringing her total campaign contributions to $11,000. Of that, Shevade spent $9,500, leaving just $1,500 to fuel the remaining five weeks of campaigning.
Dingfelder has about $89,000 left in his campaign coffers while Lytle and Glover have $39,000 and $11,000, respectively.
The four candidates are running to replace incumbent Yvonne Yolie Capin who is term-limited.
Election Day is March 5 with a runoff, if necessary, scheduled for April 23.