Candidates spent nearly $12,500 on food

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Sunday, March 23, 2014 7:45 pm | Updated: 11:42 am, Tue Mar 25, 2014.

Santa Fe’s March 4 municipal election turned out to be a high-calorie affair.

According to campaign finance reports, candidates who ran publicly funded campaigns gobbled up nearly $12,500 in taxpayer money on food and beverages, ranging from hot munchables grabbed from McDonald’s and Taco Bell to meals at the Pink Adobe and the Steaksmith at El Gancho.

Subscription Required

An online service is needed to view this article in its entirety. You need an online service to view this article in its entirety.

Have an online subscription?

Login Now

Need an online subscription?



You must login to view the full content on this page.

Thank you for reading 5 free articles on our site. You can come back at the end of your 30-day period for another 5 free articles, or you can get complete access to the online edition for $2.49 a week. If you need help, please contact our office at 505-986-3010 You need an online service to view this article in its entirety.

Have an online subscription?

Login Now

Need an online subscription?



More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 No Alias Commenters must use their real names.
  • 2 Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
  • 3 Don't Threaten or Abuse. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated. and please turn off caps lock.
  • 4 Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.

Welcome to the discussion.


  • Pierce Knolls posted at 9:39 am on Tue, Mar 25, 2014.

    Mister Pierce Posts: 1675

    Considering Javier's much lauded "house party" campaign events, I find it hard t believe that his only campaign food expense was a single $275.30 expenditure at the Hotel Santa Fe. You don't throw house parties without hors d'oeuvres and beverages, at a minimum. If food and beverages for these campaign "house parties" were donated by the home owners or party sponsors, wouldn't that constitute a donation that wouldn't have been allowed under the public financing regulations?


  • Joseph Hempfling posted at 6:14 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    joehempfling Posts: 189

    As a campaign worker I would like to suggest next time the candidates publish
    their Menu's in advance. I worked my tail off and all I got was a bottle of water ! And oh well in any case my candidate lost. Maybe food would have made the difference ?

  • Carolyn Garcia-Martinez posted at 5:47 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    CarolynDM Posts: 427

    If taxpayers are going to foot the bill for campaign food, and I assume drink expenditures, then the taxpayers themselves should be able to attend each and every one of these functions, no matter how small, and devour all the food they want. Everything should be made public, since the public is paying for it.

  • Andrew Lucero posted at 4:09 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    Andrew Lucero Posts: 132

    I don't know, maybe it's just me, but I don't think anyone who uses public money for their campaign should be allowed to use a single penny of that money for food, beverages, parties or any kind of entertainment for their campaigns. As far as I'm concerned, each of these campaigns collectively owes the tax payers of Santa Fe $12,500.00

  • Eilani Gerstner posted at 3:05 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    EG Posts: 3

    Joe Arellano did not receive a phone call about this article. We've spoken with Daniel Chacon today about it today and the New Mexican is printing a retraction tomorrow.

    One thing that will be included in our response is that catering includes all the services involved - catering staff had to set up, serve, tear down, and clean up; plates, cups, silverware, and napkins were also provided.

    Our all-volunteer team was proud that Joe Arellano's campaign was honest and up front and stayed within the public funding limits.

  • Michael Murray posted at 2:17 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    Mike M Posts: 62

    When politicians (and wanna be politicians) are getting a "boat load" of free money, why would they care how it is spent? They sure don't care when they get in office. Either way they are spending OUR money.

  • Staci Benni posted at 1:12 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    Sta Benni Posts: 172

    The campaign code says that the candidates are not suppose to spend money on travel or personal incidentals for volunteers. It also says that candidates cannot use public funds tor their or their family member's personal expenditures. Candidates are required to keep receipts so it would seem that the city could require production of the receipts. OTherwise there is no checks and balances and candidates like Segura can say anything. Also how did Gonzales spend less than $300 on the food at the victory party? And Bushee spent money on food at El Farol on Sunday night and then more money on food on Tu night at Osteria. Where are those expenditures?

  • Daniel Chacon posted at 12:05 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    Daniel Chacon Posts: 18 Staff

    The only food expense reported by Mayor Gonzales' campaign was $275.30 at the Hotel Santa Fe. But it's unclear how much was spent strictly on food because the expenditure included the cost of a stage, and as reported in today's story, the city's public campaign finance code doesn't require candidates to turn in receipts.

  • Steve Salazar posted at 11:25 am on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    Steve Salazar Posts: 872

    Did they buy local? Did they feed locals? If so, what's the problem?

  • Jack Rush posted at 10:12 am on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    SFWatcher Posts: 57

    If my math is correct around 4.4 % of the total campaign funds allocated.

  • Jeff E Green posted at 9:06 pm on Sun, Mar 23, 2014.

    Jeff E Green Posts: 112

    I spent less than Patti Bushee on food, just sayin' ... re: "City Councilor Patti Bushee, who came in second in the mayor’s race, spent about $38 on “refreshments” and water for volunteers, the smallest such expenditure reported by any candidate in the election."

  • Steven Fisher posted at 8:01 pm on Sun, Mar 23, 2014.

    sfisher951 Posts: 25

    OMG - that comes to fifteen cents per Santa Fe resident! Appalling!!!!!


Follow The Santa Fe New Mexican

Today’s New Mexican, July 25, 2014

To view a replica of today's printed edition of The Santa Fe New Mexican, you must be a subscriber. Get complete access to the online edition, including the print replica, at our low rate of $2.49 a week. That's about the price of a cup of coffee. Or get online and home delivery of our print edition for $3.24. Click here for details.