Gray outraises Isaac in mayoral race

Teresa Isaac has been running for mayor nine months longer than Jim Gray, yet Gray has raised almost three times as much money, according to quarterly campaign finance reports filed Tuesday.

Gray, Lexington's vice mayor, launched his campaign three weeks ago. He has raised $113,000 for the effort, according to his report.

Former Mayor Isaac, who notified campaign finance officials late last February that she was raising money to win her old job back, has raised $40,000, including $8,000 in the last quarter.

Because of the way the campaign finance reporting law is written, incumbent Mayor Jim Newberry did not have to file a report Tuesday. He will file again, along with his challengers, on April 16, a month before the primary.

In mid-November, Newberry reported that since June, he had raised $267,000 from 400 donors.

Gray said that his report lists 352 donors, including 214 who gave $100 or less, and noted that the money came in a period that included Christmas and New Year's Day.

"I am thrilled and humbled by the outpouring of support our campaign has received since my announcement," Gray said.

Newberry said his focus has been on being mayor and not on campaigning, but he added that he was "thrilled by the broad-based support and the number of people who have contributed to my re-election thus far."

Newberry said he anticipates an expensive campaign, especially if Gray "chooses once again to pour hundreds of thousands of dollars of his own money into the race" as he has done in previous elections. Newberry also said that "regardless of what the vice mayor and the former mayor do with their campaigns, I am confident we will have the resources necessary to run an effective race."

During an unsuccessful run for mayor in 2002, Gray, who runs a family construction company, gave $350,000 to his campaign. He spent a total of $985,000, but finished third in the primary.

Gray has said he does not plan to finance his campaign this time around. The report filed Tuesday included no contributions from the candidate.

Isaac shrugged off her relatively meager fund-raising.

"I'm proud and grateful to have donations from such a broad spectrum and so many people," she said. "Compared to my opponents, my fund-raising may seem small, but this is about the situation I faced in 2002."

In the 2002 primary campaign, Isaac spent the least — $124,000 — but got the most votes. In the general election, she beat Scott Crosbie, who spent $590,000.

For this campaign, contributors to Isaac have included real estate investor David Jones, $1,000; Cynthia Bohn of Equus Run Vineyards, $100; William Meade, manufacturer, $250; Marcia Farris, arboretum director, $75; and Dermontti Dawson, former UK and professional football player, $100.

Contributors to Newberry have included David Whitehouse, lobbyist, $1,000; Nick Rowe, Kentucky American Water president, $500; developer Tim Haymaker, $1,000; Myra Ball of Ball Homes, $1,000; and Luther Deaton, banker, $1,000.

Contributors to Gray have included Crosbie, $1,000; Foster Pettit, a lawyer and former mayor, $1,000; Graham Pohl, architect, $500; Warren Rosenthal, horse breeder, $1,000; and energy consultant Linda K. Breathitt, $1,000.

The primary election is May 18. The two top vote-getters will go on to the Nov. 2 general election.