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Beth Connor edges past Deborah Figgs-Sanders in fundraising

But Figgs-Sanders has more cash on hand.

St. Petersburg City Council candidate Beth Connor has taken the lead in fundraising, the latest campaign finance reports show.

Connor raised $2,000 during the latest fundraising period from July 20-26 bringing her total campaign haul to just shy of $19,000.

Deborah Figgs-Sanders, who had been leading the fundraising charge since jumping into the race, raised just $922 during the latest reporting period, bringing her total to $18,245.

Figgs-Sanders has more cash on hand though. She’s got about $12,000 left compared to Connor’s $4,000.

Connor’s razor-thin edge is thanks to a $1,000 personal loan to her campaign that put her over the top in funding. 

The two candidates are in a competitive five-way race for Steve Kornell’s District 5 seat representing south St. Pete in neighborhoods like Greater Pinellas Point, the Skyway Marina District and Lakewood Estates.

A third candidate, Trenia Cox, is also competitively raising funds. She’s raised more than $11,000 so far, but her momentum slowed during the most recent reporting period, raising just $100.

Figgs-Sanders and Connor both took in significant contributions. Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin contributed $150 to Figgs-Sanders and City Council member Charlie Gerdes donated $250 to Connor. 

Connor and Cox were the most aggressive with spending in the latest reports. Connor spent about $4,500 on campaign mailers from Street Smartz Consulting in Jacksonville. Cox spent $4,300 including $1,500 on mail and $2,700 to Golden Jaguar Consulting, a firm affiliated with Rep. Chris Latvala

Figgs-Sanders spent just $133 during the most recent fundraising period.

Two other candidates in the race have been less active. Anne Hirsch, a candidate running under the Uhuru banner, raised $624 for a total of $4,400. Of that, she’s spent $3,800.

Philip Garret hasn’t raised any funds and didn’t file a campaign finance report.

District 5 is one of four on the ballot this year. Kornell’s seat is open because he’s leaving office due to term limits. 

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a die-hard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics, including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and contentious issues surrounding transit. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also a devoted wife and mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder.

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