According to the report, which provided the first detailed look at the mayor's campaign finances this year, Nutter started the year with $1.1 million on hand and raised $537,629 through Nov. 23.
Almost one in every five dollars came from a lawyer or law firm, many of which do business with the city or represent clients who do.
Five firms each donated $10,000, nearly the $10,600 maximum for political committees allowed under city law.
Among other big givers was organized labor. Three unions, representing Philadelphia teachers, Teamsters, and the painters and allied trades, donated more than $30,000 combined, and several carpenters locals gave another $30,000.
Stepping up as well were the Eagles ($10,600), Democratic State Rep. Mike Gerber ($5,000), and former State Sen. Constance H. Williams, an heir to the Hess oil fortune ($2,600).
"We were extremely pleased with the tremendous amount of support we received in a short period of time," said Scott Freda, Nutter's finance director. He noted that the mayor had held just one major fund-raiser this year, in October, largely because of the economic climate and the protracted battle in completing a city budget. Nutter also held just one major benefit last year.
It is difficult to compare Nutter's midterm fund-raising with that of previous mayors because he is the first to hold office under the city's strict campaign-finance caps.
According to the mayor's report, he returned two contributions: one check for $500 from Peter DePaul, a partner in the to-be-built Foxwoods riverfront casino, and one for $2,500 from Donald R. Caldwell, a local investor in Lightning Gaming, which seeks approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to supply poker tables and slot machines.
Both contributions were legal, although an effort is under way in Harrisburg to again restrict political donations from casino-related interests after the state Supreme Court last year rejected an outright ban.
"We support the public-policy decision behind the ban," Freda said about the campaign's decision to return the money. Caldwell said Nutter had called him to explain.
On the spending side, Nutter's expenses so far this year have totaled $286,882.
That includes a $10,000 contribution Oct. 30 to help reelect Democratic Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and a $10,000 donation March 26 to Gov. Rendell's campaign committee.
Asked why Nutter had given money to Rendell, who cannot run for a third term, Freda said, "The governor has been a big supporter of the mayor, and we were asked to help the governor on his fund-raiser and we were happy to do so." (Like other candidates, Rendell can spend whatever remains in his account to influence other elections.)
The mayor's campaign-finance report also shows that Nutter spent $34,500 in February and $19,000 in March to fund two surveys by Washington pollster Peter D. Hart. Freda would not discuss the details of the surveys, but The Inquirer reported in March that Nutter's campaign had commissioned a poll on various ways to raise revenue - increasing property taxes, instituting a weekly trash fee - during the budget crisis.
During the May primary, Nutter also gave $7,500 to the 52d Ward Committee, which he has chaired since 1990. He also gave the committee $10,000 for "Election Day expenses" a few days before last month's general election.
Contact staff writer Marcia Gelbart at 215-854-2338 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mayor's Top Givers
These political committees have donated at least $10,000 each to Mayor Nutter since Jan. 1. The annual limit is $10,600 each.
Barrack, Rodos & Bacine
Obermayer, Rebmann, Maxwell & Hippel
Stradley, Ronon, Stevens & Young
Philadelphia Federation of Teachers Committee to Support Public Education
International Union of Painters and Allied Trades PAC
Carpenters PAC of Philadelphia and Vicinity
New Jersey Regional Council of Carpenters
Teamsters Local 115
Pennoni Associates PAC