Berny Jacques raises $12K in March, maintains spot as top HD 59 fundraiser

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Three candidates are running to replace Nick DiCeglie in the Florida House.

Berny Jacques continues to lead the fundraising race for House District 59, collecting more than $12,000 last month as he faces Dipak Dinanath Nadkarni and Jennifer Wilson for the Republican nomination.

Jacques, a former prosecutor and previous conservative analyst for Bay News 9, reported raising $12,410 in March for his HD 59 campaign. Jacques’ affiliated political committee, Florida Values Coalition, did not report any fundraising for March. Between his campaign and political committee, Jacques has amassed $186,970 since starting his campaign a year ago.

Jacques’ campaign reported 56 contributors in March, including six $1,000 donations from individuals like former St. Petersburg City Council member Robert Blackmon and from PACs including the Florida Accountability Fund, Sunshine State Rising and Americans For Liberty and Prosperity, Inc.

Jacques’ campaign spent $3,117 in March, including $1,100 on advertising, $1,000 on consulting services, $638 on a campaign event and the rest on processing fees. He will start April with $127,628 in available spending money.

Wilson, a local business lawyer, raised $5,925 last month from 13 contributors, including a $1,000 donation from former candidate Alen Tomczak’s political committee, Friends of Alen Tomczak, as well as another $1,000 drop from the Florida Academy of Physician Assistants PAC. She has so far raised $127,130 since starting her campaign, which includes $52,610 worth of self-funding.

Wilson spent $1,543 this time around, with nearly $1,500 going to campaign management and software, and the remainder directed toward processing fees. Wilson will start April with $117,816 cash on hand.

Nadkarni, a retired Navy physician and the newest entrant to the race, kicked off his campaign in the middle of March. He reported $50,000 in self-funding during his campaign’s first 16 days. Nadkarni did not report any expenditures in March.

The three candidates are running to replace Nick DiCeglie in the Florida House. The newly-drawn House District 59 is located in Pinellas County and includes Largo, Seminole, parts of Pinellas Park and some of unincorporated Pinellas County.

The GOP Primary currently includes front-runners Jacques and Wilson, as well as Nadkarni, all of whom are running for the Republican nomination.

Seminole City Council member Chris Burke recently withdrew from the Florida House District 59 race just a few days after announcing his campaign. Burke is also not the first Republican to drop out of the race. Former candidate Tomczak announced in early March that he ended his campaign after being called to active duty with the Florida National Guard.

As an active member of the Florida National Guard, Tomczak will be deployed overseas beginning in May, his campaign said. DiCeglie had endorsed Tomczak as his successor.

Kelly Hayes

Kelly Hayes studied journalism and political science at the University of Florida. Kelly was born and raised in Tampa Bay. A recent graduate, she enjoys government and legal reporting. She has experience covering the Florida Legislature as well as local government, and is a proud Alligator alum. You can reach Kelly at [email protected].


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