Fresno Bee Newsroom Blog

Money battle continues in Fresno trash outsourcing election war

The Measure G fundraising war continues, with both sides bringing in cash at a feverish pace ahead of the June 4 special election in which Fresno voters will decide on outsourcing the city’s residential trash pickup.

As of April 20, the Yes on G campaign, which is led by Mayor Ashley Swearengin and favors outsourcing, had raised more than $200,000. Since then, the campaign has picked up several additional contributions, including $49,000 from McDonald Aviation and $25,000 from Howe Electric.

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin

The campaign has also found some success with the west-side farming crowd. Woolf Farming & Processing donated $25,000 and Don Peracchi, a west-side grower who is chairman of the Westlands Water District board, chipped in $5,000.

That pushes the Yes on G campaign past $300,000 — and it looks like it is spending just about every cent on various campaign efforts, including television commercials.

Outsourcing opponents look to be closing the gap somewhat.

The No on G campaign had only raised around $57,000 as of April 20.

Since then, it has picked up $100,000 from the International Union of Operating Engineers Stationary Engineers Local 39, $40,000 from the Service Employees International Union Local 1000 and more than $20,000 from the Fresno Police Officers Association.

That means No on G is well past $200,000 in its fundraising efforts. And, as with the Yes on G camp, it’s spending it as well.

A pair of donations to the No on G campaign that have raised eyebrows came from Perea Reviving Jobs and the Economy Ballot Measure Committee, a committee controlled by Assembly Member Henry T. Perea, D-Fresno.

On April 3, the committee gave $10,000, and on April 15 another $10,000 — a total of $20,000.

On April 5 — in between the two contributions — Sunset Waste contributed $20,000 to the Perea Reviving Jobs and the Economy Ballot Measure Committee.

Sunset Waste, City Hall’s longtime recycling partner, is suing Fresno. Sunset contends the city’s earlier decision to outsource its commercial trash pickup breaks a recycling contract between Sunset and the city.

Assembly Member Henry T. Perea

If privatizing residential trash pickup is approved, Sunset says is will sue a second time.

Bob Stern, a campaign ethics expert and former state Fair Political Practices Commission general counsel, said the Perea committee must disclose if the Sunset donation was directed to go to the No on G campaign.

Perea and Sunset officials didn’t return calls seeking comment. It is unknown if any such disclosure was made — or was even needed.

Dillon Savory, the No on G campaign manager, said in an email statement that “We truly appreciate the support that we are receiving from a broad range of supporters. Assemblymember Perea sent us a contribution and we said thank you.”


Laura says:

Yo opino que la Medida G es algo muy bueno ´para todos los que vivimos en Fresno! Yo si estoy a favior y me gustaría que los demás se unieran

Richard says:

Dear Jimbo,

I do not know if that last statement was directed at me or not. Nevertheless, I would like to point out that if you would like to insult the people of Fresno or myself and want be taken seriously. You should edit the grammar of your comments at least twice. That way everyone reading what it is you have to say will not think you are illiterate.

I enjoyed reading everyone’s comments, it is good to know people care. I hope you all have a wonderful day.

Richard J. Roman

adam says:

Imagine if all those donors just donated the money to the city to pay bills instead of inefficiently giving it to campaigns.

Rob T. says:

Excellent point Adam. No matter what side you take in this matter you have to agree it has gotten way out of hand. There is $500,000, half a million dollars, what could the city do with that not to mention what its spending on the election itself. What a waste.

John Essex says:

If I ever live, to see 100 years of Age, I shall remember a time in our community, where Hard, Capital Cash, Printed in the Very United States of America, was spent in this manner from two opposing sides. This is a treasure amount, passing at least a half million Dollars. Our community, filled with some of the most intelligent, and dedicated politicians, and workers, to a cause of a vote. A simple, vote, about who picks up the TRASH>? We have politicians, hopping on cranes, thinking changing light bulbs, can save money for the city. We have union members, that don’t even live in the city, pro and con, stating, VOTE…YES!!….VOTE NO!!!.
One Half Million Dollars, saved, and invested, or the potential to let that loose in a struggling economy. Can you imagine, a scholarship fund, or a non-profits ability to assist our homeless Veterans? It isn’t, MONOPOLY MONEY. IT IS REAL MONEY!. We just had a national day of prayer. I pray, that people, once this is over, can concentrate on the real issue of this community. If anything, this Measure “G” event, has inspired me, to get into, simple, common sense, politics. I will run for District 6 City Council in 2016. I wont be asking for or accepting a dime. After all this, how could any politician, or leader of a community,EVER, look at the face of another citizen, and say, “I’m not in it for the Money!…while stuffing their war chests for their next election, to do “THE RIGHT THING”!

mario chavez says:

Measure G is probably the most significant proposal in the history of Fresno, it not only will give the city more money for public services but also it cares about the enviroment, proper service, and private enterprise on public sector!

elias says:

It is worht recognizing the labor of Mayor Swearining, she is looking out for the best of Fresno. Never the less, she is concerned about Fresno’s future and that is what is the most amazing! Measure G is a great solution for the current situation in the economy…

Girualt Stevens says:

It is not to be surprised that apparently everyone seems to support Measure G, and Im not of the idea of just checking what others post, yet is is important to see the impact… Measure G might sound risky but still the benefits are substaintly beneficials. In economics terms, it is by far the best solution to the crisis… therefore, I must say, IM IN with the proyect

Karen says:

Before the issues of measure G came into the spotlight, Fresno actually had news coverage that was in depth, covered every angle with a broad scope of credibility, intelnlegent, down to earth. Now, news is getting slack, and covers politically eneegized issues which I’m truly beginning to loathe. I read, hear and see measure G every day. How about other stories? Something that doesn’t cover gangs, shootings, hit and runs. It makes reading depressing. The positive side of things is knowing Fresno and surrounding counties are the best officers in any state and always catch the bad guys — always. It’s not that I don’t appreciate knowing this. It’s the most positive news I read. How about reporting on new, refreshing stories?
How about reports on what species are migrating through the ocean this month? What new businesses are opening their doors? Interviews with local farmers, how they choose growing produce, weather to plant, seasonal planting, trucking to markets. How about stories on creativity with local people. Anything but politics and Measure G, the only thing I do like about Measure G is knowing the election day, June 4th, is announced through most online reports. I barely hear the date on TV commercials, but who’s counting.

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