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Mark Grisanti, frequent filer, to Bob McCarthy: All that New York City money came from the only fundraiser I had in the January filing period.

In last Thursday’s Buffalo News, political reporter Bob McCarthy wrote that New York State Senator Mark Grisanti had reported receiving “nearly $247,000” and that, of the 85 reported donors, only one was from Western New York.

McCarthy’s insinuation was that Grisanti’s local support is slipping, and that he has become dependent on money from outside the region as he prepare for next year’s re-election bid. The insinuation is false; McCarthy deliberately ignored or is confused by the fact that Grisanti has chosen voluntarily to follow an unnecessarily stringent financial disclosure pattern for a state senator in a non-election year.

• All of the checks from outside the area arose from a fundraiser that New York Mayor Bloomberg held in October for the four Republican senators who voted in favor of the same-sex marriage bill last summer. At that fundraiser, most donors pledged money, and the pledges were fulfilled in early December, and reported in January.

• When Grisanti files, he itemizes every single donation, even if it’s under the $100 threshold a which itemization is required, in order to maximize transparency. He files to make sure everything is out there, because, according to chief of staff Doug Curella, he has nothing to hide.

• Grisanti held several local fundraisers during previous reporting periods, but none during the time covered by the January periodic filing, which would have started in mid-December.

• If you look at Grisanti’s disclosure and compare it to those of other local state senators (George Maziarz, Tim Kennedy, Pat Gallivan, and Mike Ranzenhofer), you will note that he filed pursuant to the tighter, more frequent schedule the state requires of candidates who are active in an election, despite the fact that 2011 was not an election year for him. In his unnecessary 32-day pre-primary filing, most of his individual donations came from within Western New York. All of the individual donations in the 11-day pre-primary disclosure were from Western New York. In the 32-day pre-general filing, only one individual donation came from outside Western New York.

• Had Grisanti, like his colleagues, opted not to follow that tighter election-year cycle during the last half of 2011, all of those pre-primary and pre- and post-general election disclosures would have been contained in the January filing that McCarthy wrote about.

The shorter version is, Grisanti’s January disclosure only covers December 2011. The other senators’ disclosures covers July 2011 through December 2011.

So, McCarthy’s insinuation about Grisanti’s support coming almost exclusively from outside the area, and that this is somehow out of the ordinary for a state senator, is not a fair representation of the facts in this particular instance.

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