Rolley trails far behind Rawlings-Blake in fundraising
Former city planning director Otis Rolley has raised $129,500 toward his bid for mayor, a fraction of the more than $800,000 Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has on hand.
But Rolley said in an emailed statement announcing his campaign's financial status that he "could not be more pleased."
A performance comedian Bill Cosby gave for Rolley supporters last week garnered headlines -- but didn't net a lot of money-- a little more than $42,000.
A competing fundraiser held a few blocks away for Rawlings-Blake drew many of the city's top developers, lobbyists and business leaders and raked in more than $600,000.
Rolley said that his campaign has "received an outpouring of small contributions from hard-working people" some of whom gave as little as $5 or $10.
"In our campaign, small contributions are huge.," Rolley said. "Our supporters have been getting the word out about our movement to take Baltimore to a new level of excellence and people are excited. People who typically do not give are giving."
Full financial disclosure forms for all mayoral candidates -- as many as seven people are contemplating a bid -- will be made public tomorrow.
Conventional wisdom holds that between $1 and $1.5 million is needed to win the city's top office. Candidates have until
late early July to register with the state Board of Elections and, in heavily Democrat Baltimore, the race is generally decided by the September primary.
UPDATE: Rolley has spent nearly $23,000 on campaign expenses, according his campaign filings. He has about $106,000 cash on hand, about an eighth of what Rawlings-Blake has. He spent nearly $12,000 on events, including $5000 for rent and catering for the Tremont Grand Hotel where the Cosby event was held.