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Cleveland Council President Kevin Kelley leads pack of potential mayor candidates in money race: Mark Naymik Reports

Kelley has more than $500,000 on hand; Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson raised zero dollars in 2020.
Credit: clevelandcitycouncil.org

CLEVELAND — Cleveland Council President Kevin Kelley, who is expected to formally announce his bid for mayor soon, has more $500,000 on hand for the race, according to his most recent campaign finance report filed January 26th at the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections.

He raised $217,000 for his mayoral bid in the most recent reporting period, which ended December 31st, according to his paperwork. He raised much of it from unions and Cleveland businessmen. He also received $5,000 from Ray Park, the owner of the management company that ran the I-X Center for decades. Kelley also received $500 from the Project Group, a utility consultant that has long worked with Cleveland City Council. (Council has yet to fulfill a request from 3News for the Project Group’s invoices and work product sought months ago after a report by another utility consultant hired by council showed Cleveland Public Power is beset with problems.)

Non-profit executive Justin Bibb, who formally launched his campaign last month but has been raising money for months, reported having nearlty $160,000 on hand. He raised $26,000 in the most recent finance cycle, according to his paperwork.

Dennis Kucinich opened a campaign account in December, though he has not committed to a run yet. He raised $51,000, much it from businessman and restaurant owner Tony George and his family members; and from businessman James Kassouf and his family members. Kucinich’s report shows an outstanding debt of $37,770, which is a loan owed to himself that dates to 2018.

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Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson has not said whether he plans to seek a fifth term. He has $6,200 on hand, according to his latest report. And he did not raise a penny in 2020, the last two reports show.

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Editor's Note: The below video aired on January 11, 2021