Monday, November 25, 2019

NYS Campaign Finance Commission's Campaign Finance Report

New York State’s Public Campaign Finance Commission has Voted on a Package of Bills that would Enact a Statewide Public Matching Donor Program. The Commissioners, by a Vote of 7 to 2, Approved a Plan to allow a Matching Small Donor Program, saying they believe it will be “effective and workable.”

Commissioner Jay Jacobs, who was Appointed by Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo, and is also the Head of the State’s Democratic Party, Served as the Defacto Chair. The System Approved Converges in some Significant Ways from New York City’s Long Running and Largely Successful system.

Donation Thresholds will be Higher than for New York City Mayor. Candidates for the Governor’s Office can Receive Donations of up to $18,000. But Only Donations of $250 or Less will Qualify for Matching Funds at a Rate of $6 for every $1 Contributed.

Candidates for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, and Comptroller can Receive Donations Eligible for Matching Funds from All Over the State.

But Candidates for State Senate and Assembly will Only be Allowed to receive Public Matching Funds from Donors who Live in their District.

The Earliest the Program can take effect, says the Commissioners, is more than Six years from now, in 2026, Two years after the Next Governor’s Race is held in 2024.

Alex Camarda, with the Government Reform Group Reinvent Albany says they can’t Support the Commissions’ Final Plan, but he says it’s not All Bad.

“It does still advantage incumbents, because they can raise large contributions,” Camarda said. “But at the same time just creating a public financing program does help candidates to compete against incumbents.”

The Commission’s Final Report is Due by December 1st. If the Legislature does Not Act to Change it, the Recommendations become Law by the End of the year.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker

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