We Strongly Oppose Last-Minute Bill Changing State Campaign Finance Law

S9835 (Skoufis) / A10539 (Magnarelli)
Makes Uncalled-For Last-Minute Changes to NYS Public Campaign Finance Law

WE STRONGLY OPPOSE THIS BILL, which seeks to make a last-minute change to the public campaign finance law.

The historic 2020 public campaign finance law was the result of years of public advocacy and exhaustive public meetings and consultations. This bill is being introduced three days before the end of session. Candidates and the state Public Campaign Finance Board have spent considerable time planning how to use and implement the existing law, and we believe it makes no sense to hastily change the law on the fly.

Once the primary and general elections are over and the Public Campaign Finance Board has released its legally-mandated report on the program’s implementation, the Legislature could consider changes. Now is not the time to change a law that has been so thoroughly assessed and debated.

We urge legislators to vote NO on this bill. 

An act to amend the election law, in relation to public campaign financing surpluses.

Section 1 amends Election Law §14-200-a(19) to redefine “surplus” so that public funds must be returned to the state if the surplus is more than the difference between the public matching funds received and the total qualified campaign expenditures.

Section 2 amends Election Law §14-208(2)(c) to provide that unspent funds must be returned only if the amount of qualified campaign expenditures is less than the amount of public funds remaining.

Section 3 provides that the bill takes effect immediately.

Click here to view the memo as a PDF.