Friday, September 16, 2016

Miami-Dade Striving for a Money-in-Politics Victory

Photo via Accountable Miami Dade

While Florida’s well-financed sons Governor Jeb Bush and Senator Marco Rubio campaigned and lost this cycle’s Presidential contest, advocates in Miami-Dade County are still striving for a money-in-politics victory.

And thanks to County Judge William Thomas, they just moved one step closer. He ordered a Citizen-backed Referendum that proposes a number of Campaign Finance-related changes be placed on the November ballot.

Miami-Dade County’s lawyers, who oppose the initiative, immediately appealed Thomas’s decision to the Third District Court of Appeal. A decision is expected soon because the County’s Election Administrators must send the November ballots to the printers by Saturday, September 17.

Here’s what the ballot initiative would do, per the Miami Herald:

1. Increase accountability by strengthening enforcement of existing Campaign Finance laws and increasing penalties for violations.

2. Limit the power of big-money interests in County policy making by banning large contractors from making political donations to County candidates and by closing loopholes that allow lobbyists to wield influence through gifts to officials and their staff.

3. Set strict limits on big-money contributions by reducing the maximum contribution to $250 per election ($500 for the cycle) for Mayoral and County Commission candidates.

4. Give ordinary people a stronger voice in Government and give Community-oriented candidates more opportunity to run for office by updating Miami-Dade County’s Small-Donor system to replace the large donations from wealthy contributors with small donations from ordinary people matched by limited public funds.

CLICK HERE to read the 58 page (PDF) full initiative.

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