Mayoral candidate receives $23,000 in first reporting period

Despite the 2018 Apopka municipal elections being just under a year away, activity on the campaign trail has begun for some.

Orange County Commissioner Bryan Nelson, who is running for Mayor of Apopka, has opened up an early lead in fundraising for the 2018 election against Mayor Joe Kilsheimer. Nelson reported $23,000 in campaign donations in the March report. He announced his candidacy on his personal Facebook page on March 15th, but filed and officially announced the next day. He held a fundraising event at The Catfish Place on March 26th.

Nelson’s fundraising totals include a $10,000 check from himself to the campaign, $1,100 from relatives, a $1,000 in-kind donation, and $11,900 from 45 individuals and businesses ranging from $50-$1,000. Nelson was pleased with the opening month of fundraising.

“We have had a groundswell of support from folks who care about the direction of this city,” said Nelson. “We are so blessed.”

Kilsheimer announced his campaign during the March 15th City Council meeting,  and has filed to run for re-election, but has yet to begin a formal campaign. He reported $100 in donations (from himself).

In the City Commission Seat #1 election, Gene Knight was the only candidate to report any donations – $50 from himself. Alexander Smith filed to run for the seat on April 3rd and therefore did not report any March fundraising totals. He also said his first fundraising event will be May 17th at the Something Fishy Restaurant in Apopka from 5-8 PM.

Six-term incumbent Billie Dean currently occupies Seat #1 but is undecided if he will run for re-election.

Seat #2 incumbent Commissioner Diane Velazquez has announced her intent to run for re-election but has not filed officially for that seat. However, no one has either filed to run against her in Seat #2 or announced publically their intention to do so.


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