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The List: Top Fundraising Among NJ Candidates -- and Who Raised the Funds

The fact that there are so few contested races in the coming election hasn’t stopped candidates from stocking their war chests

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If there's an election looming there must be candidates raising money.

Overall, this is a dull election year, at least at the state level, with Assembly seats topping the ballot. And New Jersey's 40 districts are gerrymandered so that almost none will have a true contest for the general election.

Nevertheless, candidates are raising money. According to state law, all professional fundraisers paid at least $5,000 a year who meet certain other requirements have to file quarterly reports with the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission detailing how much they raised, for whom, and how much they were paid for the service.

ELEC's website lists 19 people who have filed reports. Of those, only nine representing six firms have filed a report for the first quarter of 2015.

According to those reports, these are the candidates who grossed the most money during the first quarter of this year from the efforts of the professional fundraisers:

1. Democratic Assembly Campaign Committee -- $213,260 gross

The committee netted $186,260 after paying $27,000 to its fundraisers, Melissa Pollitt and Donna Marie Robinson of RP Consulting LLC of Cherry Hill. The women have been busy, working for 19 candidate committees, all of them Democrats and most of them in South Jersey, for whom they netted $581,310 and received $93,250 in payment.

2. NJ Republican State Committee -- $164,000 gross

Loren Flath, whose LinkedIn profile states she is the finance director of the state GOP, reported receiving $2,308 for these fundraising efforts. The Committee netted $138,249 during the quarter.

3. EFO Troy Singleton for Assembly -- $113,305 gross.

Singleton's campaign is the first single candidate committee on the list and one of only three that reportedly got more than $100,000 from professional fundraising efforts. One of two Democrats representing the 7th District in Burlington County, he is also one of the few candidates with a potentially difficult election -- the district's senator is Republican Diane Allen. Also using RP Consulting, Singleton netted $109,555 and paid RP $3,750.

4. Friends of Chris Brown -- $91,950 gross

Brown, an Assemblyman representing Atlantic County, is the only Republican legislator in another of the three split-districts in the state, the 2nd, and is seeking reelection. He netted $86,308. Jamie Montgomery Padulese, of Jamie Montgomery Consulting of Thorofare, received $4,000 for the effort, one of two Republicans she reported working for in the first quarter.

5. Committee to Re-Elect Vincent Prieto - $90,000 gross

The Assembly speaker, a Hudson County Democrat, is expected to have no trouble retaining his seat in the "blue"32nd District, that covers parts of Hudson and Bergen counties. Joseph M. Muniz, of Muniz Associates of North Bergen, reported receiving $9,000 for his work.

6. EFO Senator Nilsa Cruz-Perez -- $57,300 gross

Cruz-Perez is the newly appointed state senator representing the 5th District, which includes parts of Camden and Gloucester counties, and so is the only state senator on the November ballot. Being in a safe Democratic district and without any major party opponent, she is expected to win easily. Cruz-Perez netted $54,200 and RP Consulting got $3,000 for its work.

7. Camden County Democratic Committee Inc. -- $56,000 gross

RP Consulting also did fundraising and other work for the Camden Democrats. They received $8,000, while the CCDC netted $48,000.

8. Committee to Re-Elect Freeholder Bartlett and Little -- $55,275 gross

The two Republican Ocean County freeholders netted $49,721 with the help of Turnkey Productions of Cedar Grove. Three fundraisers from Turnkey filed -- Maria Chappa, Amberle Gilroy, and Theresa Mondella. Turnkey received $3,500 for its work.

9. EFO Nash for Freeholder -- $51,849 gross

Camden County Freeholder Jeffrey Nash, a Democrat in a "blue" county, netted $47,849. RP Consulting got $4,000 for its work.

10. Jen Beck for Senate -- $51,545 gross

Beck is the Republican incumbent in the upper house in the 11th, a Monmouth County district that consistently votes red. She isn't on this year's ballot, but netted $44,664 from Turnkey's efforts. Turnkey received $4,860 for its work for Beck. In total for the first quarter, Turnkey got $20,459 from netting $173,384 for six clients.

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