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Mayor Jeff Longwell, retired banker Lyndy Wells and state Rep. Brandon Whipple showed a lead in fund-raising going into next week’s Wichita mayoral primary.
Longwell stood at the top of the field, raising just shy of $89,000 since Jan. 1. That gave him a total war chest of more than $92,000, of which he’s spent nearly $40,000.
Wells reported $56,600 raised and $28,500 spent.
Whipple brought in $25,000 and has spent more than $20,000.
Amy Lyon, a manager in the tax compliance unit at Wolters Kluwer and a Navy veteran and veterans activist, was a distant fourth in fund-raising at about $2,500. She reported spending about $1,200 of that.
Monday was the deadline for candidates to file their forms showing what they’ve raised and spent so far in this campaign season.
The Aug. 6 primary will whittle the nine-person ballot down to the final two, who will face off in the general election Nov. 5.
Four of the candidates didn’t have to report their contributions and spending.
Marty Mork, Brock Booker, Ian Demory and Joshua Atkinson all filed a form that said they aren’t expecting to raise or spend more than $1,000, which gets them off the hook for filing further reports.
Reports were not available on candidate Mark Gietzen.
Both Longwell’s and Wells’ forms were heavy on contributions from building industry and restaurants interests.
Almost all of those business people gave the maximum contribution of $500, and many donated multiple times using their networks of limited liability companies as surrogate donors. Family members also are listed as donors.
This is the first mayoral race in Wichita in which candidates have been able to accept contributions from businesses, political action committees and labor unions.
Of the top three, Whipple had the fewest corporate contributions.
Lyon’s contributions were all from individuals and smaller than the donations to the other candidates. She had only one donor max out at $500, Patrick Cantwell, a retired educator who unsuccessfully challenged Sen. Susan Wagle in 2012.