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Six candidates have entered the race for Laguna Beach City Council as filing deadline looms

Laguna Beach City Hall. The City Council will have three seats up for grabs in the November election.
(Don Leach / Staff Photographer)

The Laguna Beach City Council will have three seats up for grabs in the November election — those currently belonging to Mayor Sue Kempf and Councilmembers Peter Blake and Toni Iseman.

Six candidates have stated their intent to run for a spot on the dais, including two incumbents, Kempf and Blake. Jerome Pudwill became the most recent candidate to file papers on Thursday, according to the city clerk’s office.

The filing deadline for potential candidates is Friday. If the incumbent Iseman does not file papers to run for council by the end of the day Friday, the deadline will be extended to Wednesday, Aug. 17. Here’s a look at where the campaign war chests stood as of the end of June, the most recent close of a financial reporting period.

Peter Blake (incumbent)

· Contributions received: $10,050

· Expenditures made: $5,967

· Beginning cash balance: $1,115

· Ending cash balance: $5,198

There were 24 monetary contributions made to Blake’s campaign during the reporting period from January through the end of June. The art gallery owner’s donors include some with ties to downtown eating and drinking establishments, including Italian chef Alessandro Pirozzi. Twenty of the donations made during this period reached the maximum level of contribution.

Ruben Flores

· Contributions received: $440

· Expenditures made: $50

· Beginning cash balance: $0

· Ending cash balance: $440

Flores ran for office in the 2020 City Council race, finishing in third place in what was then a pool of five candidates for two seats. The Laguna Nursery owner narrowly missed the cut, finishing 131 votes behind George Weiss in the quest to be one of the top-two vote-getters last election cycle. Production designer Nelson Coates supplied the $440 donation to Flores’ campaign during the January-June period.

Sue Kempf (incumbent)

· Contributions received: $0

· Expenditures made: $0

· Beginning cash balance: $0

· Ending cash balance: $0

The first-term mayor did not report any campaign contributions during the period from January to June.

Mark Orgill

· Contributions received: $0

· Expenditures made: $0

· Beginning cash balance: $0

· Ending cash balance: $0

Orgill, a local developer, joined the City Council race in July. He is one of two candidates to have qualified for the ballot so far, along with Louis Weil. He has served on the boards of the Laguna Beach Community Clinic and Visit Laguna Beach.

Louis Weil

· Contributions received: $20,974

· Expenditures made: $19,257

· Beginning cash balance: $8,693

· Ending cash balance: $10,235

A local Realtor and the chairman of Laguna Beach’s design review board, Weil doubled the funds raised by the rest of the field during the first half of the year. He received 65 monetary contributions, 33 of which were for $440, the maximum amount allowed for a campaign donation.

For more information, visit lagunabeachcity.net.

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