The three candidates vying to replace former Rep. Danny Burgess in Pasco County’s House District 38 raised $157,000 last month, and Dade City Republican Randy Maggard accounted for $116,000 of that total.
The small-business man and Southwest Florida Water Management District Governing Board member raised $66,050 of his total through true fundraising and chipped in another $50,000 in candidate loans.
Maggard’s donor sheet includes nearly 50 checks for $1,000, the maximum allowable contribution for state House races. Another score of donors put $500 behind the first-time candidate, while the remainder of his 128 contribs weighed in at $300 or less.
Max donors included checks from political committees tied to state Sen. Ben Albritton, Sen. Kathleen Passidomo, Sen. Travis Hutson, Sen. Rob Bradley, Sen. Aaron Bean and Sen. Kelli Stargel, among others.
Maggard spent just over $13,000 in February, leaving him with $103,000 banked heading into March.
The first-in candidate also has a political committee of his own, PASCO PAC, though it didn’t report any contributions last month. It had about $1,650 in the bank on Feb. 28.
Fellow Dade City Republican David “Mac” McCallister, who had 10 fewer days to raise money, reported $4,570 in true fundraising and kicked in $30,000 of his own money in his inaugural report for a total haul of $35,570.
He spent nearly all of that cash — $31,200 — leaving his campaign with a little over $4,000 banked heading into March. The bulk of the outflow headed to Orange Park-based Go Right Strategies for texting campaigns, printing services, consulting, list rentals and robocalls.
Finally, Wesley Chapel Democrat Kelly Smith tallied just over $6,000 during her first month in the race, all of it from donors. Her report included 82 contributions, including a single $1,000 check and another for $500. The rest of her report was made up of small-dollar donors.
The Republican nominee will be the prohibitive front-runner in the June 18 special general election against Smith. The seat has been held by a Republican since it was reapportioned ahead of the 2012 election cycle.
Based on fundraising alone, Maggard appears to have the edge, though the former Pasco GOP chair also has a long list of endorsements under his belt.
The Florida Chamber of Commerce was his most recent coup, with past nods coming from former House Speaker and current Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran, Trilby Sen. Wilton Simpson, Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco, Pasco Tax Collector Mike Fasano, Pasco Superintendent of Schools Kurt Browning, as well as Pasco Commissioners Ron Oakley and Mike Moore.