The Gift of Giving

Contribution & Expenditure Reports: July-December, '95

Christmas cards were all over the walls and on councilmembers' desks, stamped with the signature of consulting firms or engineering companies. There were boxes of fresh gourmet cookies, hand-delivered to each office courtesy of the law firm of Bickerstaff, Heath, & Smiley. Strasburger & Price, Freeport-McMoRan's representative in zoning cases, gave each councilmember a brass-wire candleholder. Paul Bury, of Bury and Pittman, the company that helped design Freeport's PUD, gave bottles of white wine. It was the week before Christmas, and councilmembers have lots of friends when the spirit of giving is in the air.

So why let the spirit die? Down at city hall, it's always Christmas. This year, talk will resurface of a $30 million Palmer Auditorium retrofit, a new $100 million City Hall, and of course, a fire-sale of the city's $1.2 billion electric utility. The list goes on and on, so it's no wonder councilmembers are so popular.

Here's a summary of the contributor and expense reports from the latter half of 1995. Look for many of these names on various wish lists later in the year.

Mayor Bruce Todd

Contributions: $41,982

Expenditures: $ 38,543

Total Contributions, 1995: $54,317

Notable Expenditures: A payment of $4,593.75 to consultant Don Martin on December 31 for 1994 campaign work. Martin is also on the payroll of Texas Utilities, the electric company interested in buying the city's utility. The mayor supports a sale of the utility.

Money from Development Interests: Entrecorp, founded by former Texas legislator Ben Barnes, $2,500; Doyle Wilson, homebuilder, $125; W & G Partnership, founded by Clayton Williams, $500; Bailie Griffith, of Griffith Properties, and Jackie Goodman's appointment to the Airport Advisory Board, $250; Lozano Ortiz & Kent Consulting Engineers, $125; S.A. Garza, engineer, $125; Baldwin Interests, Robert Baldwin III, homebuilder, $1,000; Bury & Pittman Ventures, Engineering Partnership, $500; Gerald Kucera, real-estate developer with Kucera Company, $1,250; Jack Garey, Garey Construction Company, $250; Morton Crockett, M.H. Crockett Properties, Inc., $500.

Money from PACS & Law Firms: Freeport's Texas Horizons PAC, $1,000; Mayor Day Caldwell & Keeton PAC, $500; BM & OH ELECTO-PAC, $2,500; Brown McCarroll & Oaks Hartline, law firm, $2,500; Austin Apartment Association PAC, $500; Austin Police PAC, $500; Southern Union Co. PAC, $500; Vinson & Elkins Texas PAC, $1,000; Bickerstaff, Heath, & Smiley, $1,000; RECA Good Government PAC, $1,000; Ironworkers State COPE fund, $500; Locke, Purnell, Rain, Harrell PAC, $1,000; Texas Real Estate PAC, $175; Franklin Federal Bancorp PAC, $250; Howard Falkenberg, Staats, Falkenberg & Partners, $250; Calame Linebarger Graham & Pena, law firm, $500; Wright & Greenhill, PC, law firm, $250; Drenner & Stuart, LLP, law firm, $250.

Other Notable Contributors: Former Austin mayor and current beer distributor Roy Butler of Capitol Beverage, $250; Shannon Ratliff, McGinnis, Lochridge, and Kilgore, $250; Ramada Inn South President Sheng-Ting Chen, $1,000; Leslie Canter, investor, $1,000; Sarah Weddington, attorney for nuclear waste industries, $75; Dan Bullock, executive director, St. David's Health Care Foundation, $250; James Cochran, part owner and manager of Austin News Agency, $250; Frank Phillips, auto dealer, Centex Nissan, $250; Barada Sama, Gebhard Sarma Group, $250; Katherine Bennett Ray, Ray Associates, $250; Robert Huang, importer & exporter, Forward Trade, Inc., $1,000, Bobby Ray Inman, $250; Robert Gregory, Texas Disposal Systems, $250; Craig Smith, Sierra Club, $125; political consultant Jo Anne Christian, $250; Charles Butt, Chairman and President, HEB, $500, Thomas "Hollywood" Henderson, $125; Barry Mayer, Tokyo Electron of America, $1,000; Charles Nash, $500.

Ronney Reynolds

Contributions: $19,959

Expenditures: $23,334

Total Contributions, 1995: $19,959

Money from Development Interests: Entrecorp, $250; Dan Davidson, Real Estate Development, Tree Farming, $250; Charles Dixon, Real Estate Brokerage, CB Commercial, $250; Morton Crockett, $250; Steve Tucker, Benchmark Development, $250; Sanford Gottesman, The Gottesman Company, $250; Ray Wilkerson, Ray Wilkerson Companies, $100; Christopher Heidrick, President of Hilman Constructors, Inc., $250; engineer J. Thomas Joyce, Cook-Joyce, Inc., $250; S.A. Garza, Garza engineers, $100; Terry Mitchell, Milburn Homes, $100; architect Matthew Kreisle, Page Southerland Page, $250.

Money from PACs and Law Firms: Small Craig & Werkenthin PAC, $250; Bank One, Texas N.A., Good Government Committee, $200; Austin Association of Professional Firefighters PAC, $250; Hughes & Luce Committee for Good Government, $250; attorney J. Gaylord Armstrong, McGinnis, Lochridge & Kilgore, $250; Texas Association of Realtors PAC, $250; Girling PAC, $250; attorney Bill Bingham, McGinnis, Lochridge, & Kilgore, $100.

Other Notable Contributors: Roy Butler, $100; Gary Farmer, Heritage Title Company of Austin, $250; Former UT football coach Darrell Royal, $100; Joseph Longaro, $100; consultant Don Martin, Don Martin Public Affairs, $25; Lawana C. Murphy, Hotel General Manager, Inn Home America, $250; F. Scott LaGrone, Senior VP of Radian Corporation, $250; Rev. Marvin Griffin, Ebenezer Baptist Church, $100; Beverly Griffith, property manager for Griffith Properties, and member of Texas Advocates for Parks, $250; attorney and city hall lobbyist Terrence Irion, $25; Sandra Heimsath, wife of architect and Citizens' Planning Committee Chair Ben Heimsath, $50; David Stevens, Regional Vice President, Southern Union Gas, $250.

Jackie Goodman

Contributions: $2,305

Expenditures: $3,067

Total Contributions, 1995: $33,208

Notable Expenditures: Texas Abortion Rights Action League, $250; South Austin Democrats, $50.

Notable Contributors: Robert Gregory, President, Texas Disposal Systems, $250; Balie Griffith, Griffith Properties, $250; Wright & Greenhill, PC, $100; Ironworkers State COPE fund, $500; Jonathon Beall, Save Barton Creek Association, $50; Former Councilmember Smoot Carl-Mitchell, currently of Texas Internet Consultants, $250; Ben Heimsath, Citizens' Planning Committee Chair, and architect with Clovis Heimsath Architects, $200; Sandra Heimsath, wife of Ben Heimsath, $200.


Councilmembers Gus Garcia, Max Nofziger, Eric Mitchell, and Brigid Shea, did not raise money during this period.


This week in council: Nofziger's tree ordinance and the drainage fee abatement proposal come back for a vote.

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