Molina outraises challengers in mayoral race

Richard Molina, Ramiro Garza and Gilbert Enriquez

The candidates running to be the next mayor of Edinburg filed their campaign finance reports that were due 30 days before Election Day earlier this week which showed that incumbent Richard Molina outraised his two challengers.

Current Mayor Richard Molina outraised and outspent the two other mayoral candidates — former Edinburg City Manager Ramiro Garza and former Edinburg City Councilman Gilbert Enriquez.

For the period from July 1 to Sept. 23, Molina reported receiving a total of $62,204.50 in political contributions and reported spending $79,690.50 in political expenditures.

As of the last day of the reporting period, he still had $159,931 in political contributions.

Molina’s biggest contributions included $10,000 from Border Health PAC, $5,000 from Julio Cerda, president of South Texas Infrastructure Group, former Sharyland board trustee and former Mission city manager, $3,500 from Richard Ruppert, owner of Santa Cruz Properties, and $3,500 from Shavi Mahtani, president of Domain Development from McAllen.

His expenditures included more than $24,000 in contract labor, $500 in consulting fees to Mayra Gutierrez, the former candidate for McAllen District 6 commissioner and state director for Latinos for Trump, and $10,000 in legal fees to the Najvar Law Firm.

Garza came in behind Molina, receiving $47,525 in political contributions and spending $76,550 in political expenditures from July 1 through Sept. 23, according to his campaign finance reports. As of the last day of the reporting period, he maintained $93,670. He also loaned his campaign $20,000.

The biggest contributions he received included $10,000 from Pongo RGV Holdings LLC, a real estate firm in McAllen, $5,000 from Joaquin Spammer, a developer from McAllen, $5,000 from Tawhid A. Shuaib, a McAllen physician, and $5,000 from Evergreen Cold Storage, a Pharr business.

Garza also received $5,000 from Burns Brothers Ltd., a real estate brokerage firm based in Edinburg.

His campaign expenditures included more than $20,000 in contract labor and more than $24,000 in advertising and marketing, including $735 to The Monitor.

Enriquez raised the least, reporting having received $16,000 in political contributions from July 1 through Oct. 2. He also spent $19,926 in political expenditures during that time period.

As of the last day of the reporting period, he still had $24,044 in political contributions. He also loaned his campaign $25,000.

Among his biggest contributions were $2,500 from Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson LLP, an Edinburg-based law firm.

His expenses included $2,250 to in consulting fees to Carlos Jasso, a former candidate for councilmember place 3, and nearly $14,000 in advertising expenses.

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