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Burke Joins Mayoral Race; James, Funkhouser File Campaign Reports
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Mike Burke has officially thrown his hat in the mayoral race ring.

And then there were three—officially declared candidates for Kansas City mayor in the early spring 2011 city elections, that is.

The latest to throw his hat into the ring is attorney and former councilman Mike Burke, who on Oct. 13 filed the required forms for official candidacy with the Missouri Ethics Commission. Burke, who has been considering the race for several months, named another former council member, Joanne Collins, as his campaign treasurer.

Burke, who makes his home in the Northland and practices law downtown, has an impressive civic resume, with a long-time interest in reclaiming and redeveloping the Missouri River front.

Burke joins incumbent Mark Funkhouser and another attorney, civic leader Sly James, in the field of announced 2011 mayoral candidates. Both James and Funkhouser filed their required quarterly campaign finance disclosure reports by the Oct. 15 deadline.

Funkhouser continues to lag in raising funds, although the mayor seems to be undaunted, reporting the spending of $5,000 as a retainer for conservative political consultant Jeff Roe. Funkhouser also reported a $10,000 donation from Julia Irene Kauffman of Mission Hills. In his latest quarterly report, Funkhouser reported only two other contributions, $1,000 each from Lee Benny and Rock Kutak.

Sylvester James, Sly’s given name, has set a fast pace in raising funds since James announced his candidacy early this year. A former president of the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, James helped knock down barriers to minority hiring in big Kansas City law firms. He has surpassed the $250,000 mark in building a campaign war chest, with much of that amount coming in relatively modest donations from fellow attorneys.

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