Governor-elect Maura Healey will seek donations up to $25,000 from business and individuals to fund a slate of inaugural events around her January swearing-in, her campaign said Wednesday.
Under state rules, inaugural committees can raise and spend unlimited funds, but Healey’s self-imposed limit matches the caps Governor Charlie Baker and Mayor Michelle Wu set on their own inaugural fundraising in recent years. Baker separately limited gifts from lobbyists to $250 and $200 for his two inaugurations.
Individuals can’t give more than $1,000 to a candidate’s campaign each year, and businesses are barred completely under state law from making donations to a campaign. But inaugural committees aren’t bound by such restrictions.
Inaugural events tend to be lavish affairs, backed by high-dollar contributions from major businesses, developers, and others with interests before government officials. Baker, a second-term Republican, raised a record $2.4 million to fund a slate of events around his first inauguration in 2015 while Wu, who won office last November, raised more than $1.3 million, records show.
Former governor Deval Patrick raised $1.9 million for his 2007 celebration, for which the Democrat sought donations up to $50,000.
Healey, a Cambridge Democrat, and Lieutenant Governor-elect Kim Driscoll will be sworn in on Jan. 5.
Their campaign opened the Healey Driscoll Inaugural Committee with campaign finance officials last week. Aides said Wednesday that Bryan Rafanelli, a sought-after events planner, and Barbara Lee, who heads a foundation working to increase women’s representation, will serve as cochairs for the inauguration.
Rafanelli’s company, Rafanelli Events, will produce the events. Rafanelli, who also has served as a finance cochair for Healey’s campaign, has planned weddings for Chelsea Clinton and, more recently, Naomi Biden, President Biden’s granddaughter who was married at the White House on Saturday.
Katie Prisco-Buxbaum will serve as the inaugural committee’s director. Prisco-Buxbaum was a consultant for Driscoll’s campaign, as well as for Sonia Chang-Díaz’s gubernatorial campaign before the state senator ended her bid in June, leaving Healey as the only Democrat actively running.
Matt Stout can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @mattpstout.