I spent part of yesterday — campaign disclosure deadline day — at the Orange County Registrar of Voters’ office, where candidates for county offices who have raised $25,000 or more in contributions or loans must file online campaign disclosure reports.

Those who’ve crossed the $25,000 threshold faced a midnight deadline to report how much they raised, spent and borrowed in the run-up to the June 8 primary election.

Candidates who raised less than $25,000 could file paper reports by yesterday.

Registrar of Voters Neal Kelley stopped by the table where I set up my laptop to report that almost all candidates who are required to file electronically, are doing so. This was a relief to the registrar who was worried that confusion over the new law among candidates would force he and his staff to “chase them down.”

Candidates were introduced to electronic filing in January, when they had to report how much they raised between July 1, 2009, and the end of the year. A few filed late in that reporting period, Kelley said, possibly because they were unaware of the new law or their campaigns didn’t understand the technology. But after receiving warning letters, the tardy contenders complied.

To help candidates understand the new system, Kelley said the registrar’s office also offered a seminar that was attended by representatives of most campaigns.

That said, only three of the seven contenders in the running to replace Supervisor Chris Norby in the Fourth District were likely to have raised enough money to trigger the online filing requirement.

  • Lorri Galloway, a member of the Anaheim City Council, reported she has spent $112,561.69 on the race and raised a total of $155,334, including $100,000 she loaned her campaign. As of May 22, she had a cash balance of $109,097.04 and owed $144,546.73.
  • Harry Sidhu, another Anaheim city councilmember running for the Fourth District supervisorial seat, says he’s raised $239,923 for his campaign altogether and spent $198,202.83. He said he has cash-on-hand of $69,248.43 and outstanding debts of $175,000.
  • Fullerton City Councilman Shawn Nelson reported raising the most money, a total of $274,828 and spending $253,342.84. He said he had a cash balance of $59,951.36 and outstanding debts of $216,761.64.
  • Candidate Rose Espinoza didn’t raise enough to be required to file online, but she did it anyway. She reported raising $8,966 in total for her campaign and spending $17,715.24 with a cash balance of $1,316.95 and outstanding debts of $8,143.81.

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