Suffolk’s Democratic County Executive Steve Bellone has more than $2 million in his coffers entering the race for a third term, 20 times more than his closest potential rival, according to new campaign filings.
Bellone, in his latest campaign finance filing filed Wednesday, reported $2,042,927 in cash on hand. He raised $490,185 since the campaign's last filing in late November, most of it from a Dec. 19 fundraiser.
Bellone had $1.4 million for the same January filing period in 2015 when he last sought re-election, and more than $1 million when he first declared for county executive in January 2011.
Republican county Comptroller John M. Kennedy, who is weighing a possible run against Bellone, reported $94,427 in cash on hand following his close re-election last fall.
Suffolk Legis. Robert Trotta (R-Fort Salonga), who also is considering a Bellone challenge, reported $38,271 cash on hand after raising $22,375 at a fundraiser last month. Should Trotta run for county executive he could not seek re-election as a county lawmaker this fall.
In Nassau County, District Attorney Madeline Singas, a Democrat who is up for re-election this year, has $962,702 on hand, campaign spokesman Isaac Goldberg said in a news release. Singas raised $417,974 during the six-month filing period.
State filings show the three biggest donors to the Singas campaign were: Deborah L. Rechler of Glen Head, wife of Mitchell Rechler of Rechler Equities, who gave $25,000; Nassau Democratic chairman Jay Jacobs, who donated $15,000; and Manhattan entrepreneur Nicholas Logothetis, $10,000.
Nassau County Executive Laura Curran, a Democrat who isn’t up for re-election until 2021, raised just under $573,000 since July 15 and has about $807,000 in the bank, records show.
Her largest donations came from Manhattan businessman and philanthropist Ira Riklis, who gave $25,000; Jeffrey Weiner of Melville, $10,000; and Margaret Cremins of Larchmont, $7,500.
Bellone’s biggest donors included $15,000 each from the Long Island Building PAC and Altice USA New York PAC; $11,000 from the Suffolk Correction Officers Association; $10,000 each from the Association of Municipal Employees, which represents Suffolk’s white and blue collar workers, Winter Bros. Waste Systems and Rechler Equity Management LLC; and $5,000 from Harris Beach Political Committee. The firm does legal work as Suffolk’s bond counsel.
Bellone’s largest expenditures included $33,100 to Conscious Voting Inc. for a recent mailing; $30,500 to Tucker Green Consulting; $6,233 to the law firm of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan; and a $5,000 donation to Republican Tara Scully after her unsuccessful campaign for Suffolk Surrogate judge. Earlier, Bellone had given her campaign $10,000.
Despite Bellone’s fundraising edge, Kennedy said the money he has raised gives him “a good platform to move forward. With the right message . . . I believe voters will embrace a candidate ready to confront our fiscal challenges.”
Trotta assailed Bellone’s fundraising, saying “This is why taxes are so high. He's raising millions of dollars to run his campaign and clearly he owes people favors.”
Bellone's campaign didn't respond to a request for comment.
The Suffolk Democratic Committee, meanwhile, reported having $290,589 cash on hand and raising $41,594 since its post-Election Day filing.
The Suffolk Republicans' campaign, housekeeping and Chairman's Club accounts had a total of $15,694 cash on hand.
With Celeste Hadrick