Kaiser Permanente has written a $25,000 check to Healthy Kids, Healthy Portland, the political action committee pushing for Measure 26-151, which would authorize fluoridation of Portland's water supply, according to a filing with the state.
That check continues a mini-trend: the pro-fluoride campaign has gotten institutional support, while the anti-fluoride campaign, Clean Water Portland, is primarily funded by individuals.
With the Kaiser contribution, Healthy Kids has raised $152,000 in calendar 2013 and has $59,000 on hand. Clean Water Portland has raised $72,000 and has $22,000 on hand.
Although the pro-fluoridation campaign is out-raising its opponents nominally, the truth its that Healthy Kids fundraising total is modest.
There are two other measures on the May ballot that, unlike fluoridation, face no organized opposition. Metro's operating levy for its park lands, Measure 26-152, has raised $132,000 and has virtually all of that on hand; and City Commissioner Dan Saltzman's children's initiative, 26-150, has raised $225,000 and also has spent next to nothing.
So given the passion of the anti-fluoride campaign and the expense of city-wide advertising campaigns, the Healthy Kids campaign's war-chest is small. One caveat—campaigns are still in the period in which they have 30 days to declare transactions, so it's possible Healthy Kids is sitting on a pile of undeclared contributions. The Kaiser check, for instance, was written a month ago.
Ballots will be counted on May 21.