Over One-Third of All Hayward Mayoral, Council Contributions this Year are Loans

Mayoral candidates Barbara Hallida, Mark
Salinas, Francisco Zermeno.

HAYWARD | CAMPAIGN FINANCE | Candidates for mayor and the City Council in Hayward reported campaign contributions totaling over $47,000 during the first quarter of this year. However, according to campaign finance reports, over 35 percent, or $16,771, of the total represents personal loans made by candidates to their respective campaign efforts. Of the seven candidates who filed finance reports this quarter for either office, just one, Councilmember Mark Salinas, who is running for mayor this June, listed no outstanding loans to his campaign. A second candidate, Councilmember Marvin Peixoto, who is running for re-election, however, did not report any new loans this year, but still owes $41,300 in campaign loans to himself from 2008 and 2010.

The figures suggest most of the candidates deemed front runners in their respective races are having difficulty inspiring financial backing. Mayoral candidates Barbara Halliday and Francisco Zermeno, also colleagues on the City Council, inflated their cash on hand with significant personal loans. A day before the end of the first quarter filing period, Halliday added a $5,000 loans to her campaign coffers. Since last October, she has issued a total of $7,000 in loans. Meanwhile, her total cash on hand, as of Mar. 17, is $12,073, according to finance reports, with $3,985 in individual contributions received and $6,269 in expenditures.

Zermeno’s financial picture is also similar after giving himself $5,000 on Feb. 28 for a total of $10,000 in loans since last fall. The late loan bumped Zermeno’s cash on hand to a campaign-leading $15,636, according to finance reports, and including $3,329 in individual contributions and $9,338 in expenditures. Salinas reported $12,350 in cash with $8,339 in individual contributions and $9,186 in expenditures, according to finance reports.

In the City Council race, which features an at-large format with the top-two finishers winning open seats, Councilmember Peixoto’s re-election is being threatened by potential union-friendly candidates hoping to unseat him. In February, Peixoto and the entire council angered labor leaders by imposing a five percent wage cut on nearly 300 city workers. Peixoto reported $8,165 in cash, including $3,398 in contributions and just $208 in expenditures, according to finance reports. Among his contributors is fellow Councilmember Greg Jones, Hayward school board member William McGee and Mayor Michael Sweeney, who has endorsed Peixoto.

To illustrate the propensity of Hayward candidates to put their campaigns in debt, one candidate’s entire financials is currently comprised of loans. Sara Lamnin entered the race near the end of the filing period earlier this month, potentially at the behest of the Service Employees Union International, and loaned herself a total of $4,971. Over half of the loan was used to pay $2,471 in filing fees and a candidates statement. After the payments, her cash on hand is $2,400.

Hayward Planning Commissioner Rodney Loche also has a $1,000 outstanding loan from last November, however, his $9,263 in individual contributions received this year is the largest total among all candidates for office in Hayward. After $5,356 in expenditures, Loche maintains $5,625 in cash, according to finance reports. Among his contributors is Councilmembers Jones, Peixoto and Mayor Sweeney.

Hayward restaurant owner Julie McKillop reported contributions of $2,349 and expenditures of $2,546. McKillop, too, issued an $800 loan to her campaign to give her an ending cash balance of $604, according to finance reports. Other council candidates, including Rocky Fernandez, Ralph Farias, Phillip Gallegos, did not file campaign finance reports.

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