This is the latest installment in a series of posts detailing the 2011 political spending by California state workers' unions. The records are downloaded from the California Secretary of State's office and reflect activity filed as of Jan. 31, 2012.
California Department of Forestry Firefighters' PAC took in contributions of about $313,500 last year and spent a little more than $290,000 on political activities. Like many state employee unions, CDFF wrote its biggest checks to the California Democratic Party ($100,000 total) and consultants ($38,000 to Marketplace Communications, a media relations arm of Sacramento-based Aaron Read & Associates).
As you look through the table below, remember that expenditures show everything a union PAC spent on political activities, including operating costs. Contributions pages break out donations received (usually from members) and donations given to political campaigns and causes. Tabs at the bottom of the spreadsheet open tables with more detailed information of the union's political spending.
To get a sense of similar spending in California by other interest groups, check out Maplight.org. The California data on that site run through December 2010.