With only about five weeks to go before the Nov. 6 general election, the campaign to create a Multnomah County library district is raising far more money than the two other financial measures on the Portland-area ballot.

The committee to pass Measure 26-143 has so far reported collecting more than $560,000. Big contributions include $190,000 from the Library Foundation and $75,000 from AFSCME Local 75.

In second place — for now — is the campaign to pass Portland Public Schools’ $482 million construction bond measure. The committee in support of Measure 26-144 has reported raising more than $166,000. Big contributions include $15,000 from Northwest Natural and $10,000 each from Cambia Health Solutions, Miller Nash law firm and the Building a Better Oregon PAC, which represents contractors.

In third place is the campaign in support of the city’s $35 per-person arts tax. The committee in support of Measure 26-146 reports raising more than $125,000. The biggest contribution is $10,000 from the Regional Arts and Culture Council.

Saying no to art and schools

Meanwhile, some opposition to the measures has surfaced.

No surprise, the Cascade Policy Institute and the Taxpayers Association of Oregon have filed Voter’s Pamphlet pages against the library district. The TAO has also filed a page against the school bonds and the arts tax. Also opposing the school bonds is a group called Restore Education Before Buildings.

The opposing arguments are similar for all three measures — they are not needed, they raise taxes unnecessarily, and there are more pressing needs for the money. The TAO has also purchased lawn signs against the school bonds that will go up soon.

Executive Director Jason Williams declined to say how much his group expects to raise and spend against them.

Fritz lives within her means

When City Commissioner Amanda Fritz said she was personally tapped out after the May election, she apparently meant it.

After donating more than $135,000 to her primary campaign, Fritz has so far only contributed a little more than $601 to her general election campaign.

The rest is coming from her supporters, many of which are donating her $250 voluntary maximum.

The limit apparently only applies to cash donations, however. Fritz reported receiving a $1,071.56 in-kind contribution from UFCW Local 555 on Sept. 21. It was for “poll questions.”

Meanwhile, Fritz’s challenger, state Rep. Mary Nolan, is continuing to receive even larger donations. Recent ones include $10,000 from the Portland Metro Firefighters PAC and $5,000 from developer Mark Madden.

As a result, Fritz is now falling behind Nolan’s fundraising totals. So far this year, Fritz has reported receiving more than $203,000 in cash and in-kind contributions in 2012, while Nolan reports collecting more than $263,000 this year.

But Nolan’s lead is growing even greater in the closing weeks of the campaign.

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