Democratic candidate Michelle McGovern raised $24,500 in September, narrowly topping Matt Willhite in the Palm Beach County Commission District 6 seat.
Willhite brought in just over $24,100 during September. The two are competing in a four-person field to succeed term-limited Commissioner Melissa McKinlay. Sylvia L. Sharps is also running as a Democrat, while Sara Baxter is competing as a Republican.
McGovern has collected more cash than Willhite since April, when both candidates entered the contest. But Willhite retains an overall cash lead thanks to money he brought over from previous House runs via his political committee, Floridians for Public Safety. Willhite announced in April he would forgo a fourth and final term in the House to pursue the District 6 seat on the Palm Beach County Commission.
Willhite holds nearly $202,000 in cash on hand as of Sept. 30. McGovern is second with close to $169,000. Sharps retains just over $6,800, while Baxter has just under $2,300 available.
Willhite, an experienced firefighter, collected $3,000 each from Palm Beach County FIREPAC and the Professional Firefighters and Paramedics of Palm Beach County. Both of those donations came through Willhite’s PC.
In September, Willhite spent just under $3,000. Almost all of that cash went to MDW Communications for email marketing.
McGovern raised $18,500 through her campaign account in September while adding another $6,000 via her political committee, Team McGovern.
Sharps and Baxter heavily trailed Willhite and McGovern in September fundraising. Sharps raised just $1,200, while Baxter showed $0 in contributions for the month.
McGovern spent more than a decade working as former U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson’s regional director in West Palm Beach. She then served as Nelson’s state director. McKinlay has endorsed McGovern as her preferred successor.
District 6 on the Palm Beach County Commission includes the communities of Belle Glade, Pahokee and South Bay. Candidates and political committees faced a Monday deadline to report all financial activity through Sept. 30.