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What gives on who gives?

March 02, 2007

With no contribution limits and a high-stakes battle between the teachers union and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in this year's L.A. school board race, donors have poured in cash. Some have business before the school district; others have dealings before the mayor and city; still others are motivated by civic duty. The mayor's campaign committee must disclose how it's spending money between now and Tuesday's primary election, but will no longer report who's giving money to the mayor's committee until midyear unless there is a runoff. What follows is a list of selected donors to the two bigger-money campaigns.

Amount | Donor | Comment

District 3

Jon M. Lauritzen*

$475,000 | UTLA | United Teachers Los Angeles most wants to save this incumbent. In 2003, the union kicked in $909,572.

$10,000 | Service Employees Local 99 | Represents non-teaching district employees, such as cafeteria workers. The union did not endorse incumbent Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte - saying she didn't push for benefits for part-time workers.

$500 | Geffner & Bush | Law firm represents UTLA, often using attorney Jesus Quinones, one of the mayor's best friends. That's awkward. Last time, G&B gave $2,250 to Lauritzen.


Tamar Galatzan

$827,519 | Partnership for Better Schools | The mayor's vehicle for funding candidates. Galatzan's the main beneficiary. And there may be more on the way. Part of the benefit: an estimated $400,000 cable TV buy. The mayor also has helped fund favored candidates in districts 5 and 7.

$100,000 | Edith Wasserman | Widow of MCA/Universal head Lew Wasserman also gave $100,000 to District 1 candidate Johnathan Williams.

$10,000 | James A. Thomas | Developer seeking expansion of Universal Studios - with mayor's support - has a total of $30,000 into mayor's candidates.

$1,000 | Elliott Broidy | Publicity shy investor and patron of Israel. Galatzan once was an attorney for the Anti-Defamation League.

$1,000 | L.A. Area Chamber of Commerce | Galatzan spouse Brendan Huffman was the chamber's head lobbyist. But the district chamber would probably trust Villaraigosa's pick anyway.

$1,000 | Majestic Realty | City of Industry mega-developer headed by Ed Roski Jr. website

$1,000 | Playa Capital | Developer of controversial Playa Vista, now headed by developer (and friend of former Mayor Richard J. Riordan) Steve Soboroff.

$500 | Jim McConnell | Former head of L.A. Unified's construction program. Runs Pasadena company whose clients include the school district.

$500 | Laura Chick | The city controller and Villaraigosa ally wants to audit L.A. Unified.


Louis Pugliese

$6,000 | Loan to himself | The price of independence, or, what happens when you're "the other guy."


District 1

Johnathan Williams

$100,000 | Reed Hastings | Made fortune with Netflix; sat on state Board of Education; funds charter schools.

$80,000 | Richard J. Riordan | This donation understates his full involvement - his cohorts are also on the contributor list.

$50,000 | Christy R. Walton | Widow of a Wal-Mart heir, one of the 10 richest Americans. Family known to back conservative causes, though charter-school support crosses ideological lines. Former Wal-Mart executive Gregory Penner also kicked in $50,000.

$50,000 | Richard L. Sharp | Fodder for attack ad: The former Circuit City and CarMax exec., a Virginia resident, is closely associated with the voucher movement.

$25,000 | Robert Day | Chairs the Trust Co. of Lenders; a major political donor who also has advised Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

$15,000 | Eli Broad | Funds charter schools and school reform, pushed for mayoral takeover of L.A. Unified.

$10,000 | Jami Gertz | Actress whose husband is active in the charter school movement.

$2,000 | Beny Alagem | Former Israeli tank driver founded a computer maker, bought Beverly Hills Hotel in 2003. One of many business celebs.

$1,000 | Steve Barr | Outspoken charter schools founder takes care of one of his own.

$1,000 | William G. Ouchi | A UCLA professor and Riordan's education guru.


Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte*

$450,000 | UTLA | Without this infusion, better than 18 times the next largest donation, her campaign would rely substantially on small donations from small-business owners and current, former and retired district employees.

$24,000 | Associated Administrators of Los Angeles | Represents principals and mid-level managers and almost alwaysendorses incumbents.

$3,000 | Gateway Science and Engineering | Construction management firm headed by Art Gastelum, longtimeaide to Mayor Tom Bradley and subsequently a lobbyist.

$1,000 | Los Angeles School Police Assn. | Depends on the board for salary and benefits.

$1,000 | Teamsters Local 572 in Carson | One of the state's largest Teamsters locals, representing 12,000 workers, including some logistical workers at L.A. Unified.

$500 | Bernard C. Parks | The councilman, a pillar among the city's old-guard black political leaders, stands with fellow pillar LaMotte.

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