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Orange County

Funding for El Toro Airport Foes Tops $550,000

Land use: Money flows into campaign, while proponents lag behind.

January 26, 2002|DAVID REYES | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Opponents of the county's plans for an El Toro airport have raised more than $550,000--$98,000 of it in early January--in support of Measure W, the park initiative on the March ballot, according to campaign reports.

If approved, Measure W would replace airport zoning at the 4,700-acre former Marine base with zoning for an urban park, university complex and sports fields.

The majority of the "Yes on Measure W" funds will pay for mailers to highlight the park alternative, and for posters, television ads and voter registration pushes, said Leonard Kranser, a spokesman for the Measure W drive.

The filing period covers the first 19 days of January. Kranser said the campaign hopes to raise an additional $1 million before the election.

"This is a challenge because most of our donations come in small checks but from large numbers of people. But it's our goal," Kranser said. A spokesman for "No on the Great Tax--Measure W" said that group did not raise more than $1,000--the reporting threshold--during the filing period.

In the race between Supervisor Cynthia P. Coad and challenger Chris Norby, a Fullerton councilman, Coad reported raising $95,700 in the first weeks of this year, $90,000 of it in personal loans from herself.

In 2001, Coad raised $653,700, mostly in personal loans.

By contrast, Norby has raised $27,725 this year, mostly from South County residents who support him because of his anti-airport stand. Norby has about $64,000 in his political war chest.

In the race for district attorney, incumbent Tony Rackauckas reported raising $3,375, while challenger Senior Assistant Dist. Atty. Wally Wade raised $28,430.

For 2001, Rackauckas raised about $200,000 more than his opponent.

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