Mayor-elect Dennis Kintigh collected the majority of his campaign war chest before he officially filed for office.
The tactic allowed his campaign to gather $21,722 in contributions during the time period that did not require him to publicly disclose the donors in campaign finance reports.
“We’ve complied with the reports that require us to state from the date of filing through the various time periods of the reports,” Kintigh said. “Anything outside of that is not subject to reporting. Some people might not be happy with that, but the problem with that is that the statute is poorly written.”
Kintigh raised more than the $36,436 he spent in his campaign to defeat incumbent Mayor Del Jurney, he said. He estimated he has a few hundred dollars left.
“We haven’t finalized the books yet,” Kintigh said. “I don’t think we have a lot of money left over.”
Kintigh collected contributions from 180 separate individuals, he said.
“That was, to me, staggering,” he said. “That I would get that much support from within the Roswell area.”
Kintigh declared his bid for the mayoral race in September. He said he received some contributions from people he did not know.
“I got checks in the mail from people who were that fired up, saying, ‘I want change,’” Kintigh said. “Everybody got a hand-written thank-you card from me.”
Less than 5 percent of his donors live outside of Roswell, Kintigh estimated. Among those, many had ties to the community or they had a personal relationship with him, he said.
The donors had lived in Roswell for many years and had moved, or had relatives living in the city, he said. No one from the Washington, D.C., area donated to his campaign.
“I received no money from any political action committees. They were individuals or businesses,” Kintigh said.
Kintigh did receive $5,000 from two companies related to the oil and gas industry that was reported.
But, special-interest companies and individuals who donated to his campaign will not receive any additional consideration while he is in office as a result, he said.
“If people are going to reach out and support candidates, they are comfortable with candidates that they see as their philosophies and political outlooks are parallel,” Kintigh said. “I’ve got a reputation of being an advocate for the oil and gas industry. That goes back to the big battle over that sand dune lizard. And that’s where that comes from.”
The campaign contributors and he were already on the same page before he was a candidate, he said.
“When I talk about economic development, oil and gas are important. That’s been my message from the beginning — from the announcement date,” Kintigh said. “I’m not suddenly going to be changing tunes because Dennis is getting dollars.”
Other candidates probably also received funding prior to filing for office, Kintigh said, adding that the finance contributions ordinance needs to be rewritten to include all information.
“No one bothered to fix it before this election. I wish they had,” Kintigh said. “I intend to fix it myself.”
Kintigh and the newly elected City Councilors will be sworn into office at 5 p.m. Monday at the Roswell Convention and Civic Center.