The largest of those contributors is developer Paul McKee, who needs the city's help to become eligible for $100 million in tax credits. After McKee was refunded about $13,000, his holding companies and associates later made a dozen smaller contributions that covered the same amount.
Slay defends the donations, saying the dollars don't get donors extra access.
"We work with anybody we believe will be good for the city," Slay said.
Contributors say they give to Slay not for special treatment but because they support his policies.
Critics charge that while the funding strategy is not illegal, it undermines the spirit of campaign laws meant to limit the influence of big donors and allow for full disclosure.
The media should continue to look at who is contributing and how those contributions are being made instead of concentrating simply on how much money each candidate has raised.