Perpetual Palo Alto City Council candidate and panhandler Victor Frost is again tossing his hat into the ring this year, bringing the number of unofficial candidates for November's race to six. Finance consultant Timothy Gray this week also filed his campaign-finance statement.
A seventh potential candidate, concert promoter Mark Weiss, has pulled election papers but has not yet filed them.
They join attorney Marc Berman, Santa Clara County Supervisor Liz Kniss and incumbent councilmen Greg Schmid and Pat Burt in their quest to fill four open seats on the nine-member council.
Frost, Gray and Weiss all made bids for the council in 2009.
Last year, Frost -- who often sits on sidewalks in the downtown and California Avenue districts -- lost a long legal tussle with the city over its sit-lie ordinance and was fined $50 for two infractions. His campaign flier this year lists "constitutional rights, homeless rights, civil rights and developing a new democracy" as his key issues.
In 2009, Gray focused his campaign on the city's finances and its infrastructure backlog. He identified himself as "independent voice" and also expressed concerns about the police department and high-speed rail.
Most recently, Weiss has advocated for the preservation of the old Varsity Theater in downtown Palo Alto, which formerly housed a Borders bookstore, as a concert venue. In 2009, Weiss told the Weekly he would eschew both campaign committees and financial contributions.
According to campaign-finance statements, covering the period from Jan. 1 to June 30, neither Frost nor Gray have received any contributions for their council bids.
With three months to go, most of the other candidates' campaigns are just starting to hit the ground. Marc Berman has received $22,105 in contributions, including $100 from current councilwoman Nancy Shepherd and $350 from the Rich Gordon for Assembly Committee.
Kniss has raised $5,800, including contributions from current councilwoman Gail Price and past council members Judy Kleinberg, Gary Fazzino and Peter Drekmeier.
Schmid has loaned his campaign $2,500. Burt has announced his candidacy but not officially entered the race.
Besides the council candidates' fundraising, the campaign to allow medical marijuana dispensaries to open in Palo Alto has raised $2,500 and spent more than $70,000. The majority of that, $47,000, was spent on consultant DLA Piper, and pollster Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates was paid $16,000.
City Council to lose its two youngest members (July 20, 2012)
Berman rakes in contributions for City Council race (July 17, 2012)