The Buffalo Mayoral Race: Campaign Finance

July 17, 2013 Updated Jul 17, 2013 at 11:50 PM EDT

By John Borsa

July 17, 2013 Updated Jul 17, 2013 at 11:50 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) - Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown is leading the three-way race for City Hall with the largest campaign war chest.

Brown has amassed $1.3 million. Roughly $400,000 was raised this year.

"We just continue to work hard every single day. I am out talking to voters every single day, listening to people, getting things done as mayor every single day," said Brown.

Brown said money is not the only factor for success.

But his Republican opponent, Sergio Rodriguez, is learning that money helps. Rodriguez has raised just $17,000 and has a balance of $1,000, according to the state's financial disclosure website.

"It's always been an uphill battle, we are the underdog in this campaign," he said.

"Ultimately it's about connecting with people. I'm out there knocking on doors, every single day," Rodriguez said.

Democrat Bernie Tolbert, who will face Brown in a primary challenge in September, appears to be on good financial footing. He has promised to raise as much as $350,000 this year and is nearly at his goal.

Tolbert has $200,000 in the bank and raised almost $212,000. He loaned his campaign $45,000 out of his personal accounts.

"It is what it is. And we're prepared to deal with it, face it head on and to be successful in September and in November," said Tolbert.