District 3 City Councilmember Justin Outling announced his candidacy for Greensboro mayor in December 2020 and has a lot of financial support.

Although the election has been pushed back from October and November of this year to March and April or May 2022, according to the recently filed campaign finance report Outling has been quietly working on what will be his first citywide campaign.

The Vote Outling campaign finance report shows that through June 30, 2021 Outling had raised a total of $139,739.

Presumably in the last month Outling has brought in a few more dollars, which would put him over the $140,000 mark, and although campaigns seem to get more expensive with every election, that is a considerable amount of money for a mayoral race in Greensboro.

With the election delayed by the state for four months, Outling hasn’t spent much on his campaign, which means as of June 30, Vote Outling had $134,723 in cash on hand.

Mayor Nancy Vaughan is running for reelection but has no campaign finance report on file with the North Carolina Board of Elections or the Guilford County Board of Elections for June 30, 2021.  According to the Guilford County Board of Elections website, the latest campaign finance report filed by the Committee to elect Nancy Barakat Vaughan is through Dec. 31, 2019 and lists cash on hand as $105.

Vaughan said that she was having problems with the campaign finance reporting software and planned to take a hard copy of her June 30, 2021 report to the Guilford County Board of Elections office today.

Vaughan said that there was no change in her campaign finance report in 2020 since she was not actively campaigning or raising money.  But she said she did loan her campaign $10,000 this summer and spent $2,000, and the June 30, 2021 report she was filing in person would reflect that.  Vaughan also said that she was up to date on filing reports except for the June 30, 2021 report, which was due at the end of July, and she said, “I plan to ask them why the reports don’t show up.”

Vaughan said, “I’ve been focused on the real issues and haven’t had a chance to start campaigning.  I normally don’t start campaigning until July.”

Since Vaughan won her mayoral races in 2013, 2015 and 2017, that strategy has been working.

When asked about the $139,000 raised by Outling, she said, “I’m not surprised since he started last year.”

Vaughan added, “I’ve always been outraised.  I don’t think money is the deciding factor.

Kay Hutchins is running advertisements stating that she is running for mayor but does not have a campaign finance report on the website of the Guilford County Board of Elections or the North Carolina Board of Elections.

The Greensboro elections for the five district city councilmembers were delayed by state statute because the US Census Bureau has not yet released the data from the 2020 Census and the city could not redistrict without the Census data.

Greensboro could have held a split election where the election for the mayor and the three at-large city councilmembers was held in October and November and the election for the five district city councilmembers was held in March and April or May. 

However, before the municipal election bill became law, the Greensboro City Council voted to hold only one municipal election.  When the district races were delayed by state law, that meant in Greensboro the election for mayor and the three at-large councilmembers was also delayed.

It is still extremely confusing because whether the general election will be held in April or May won’t be determined until after the March 8 primary.  The municipal general election is set for the same day as the statewide primary runoff, and when that primary runoff is held depends on whether or not there is a runoff for a federal office.