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Proposed New York State Clean Elections legislation

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows:

       Section 1. Legislative findings and declarations. The legislature finds and declares that the current system of privately financed campaigns diminishes the meaning of the right to vote by allowing large contributions to have a deleterious influence on the political process. As the U.S. Supreme Court found in Buckley v. Valeo, states have a compelling interest “to reduce the deleterious effect of large contributions on our political process.” The current system also violates the rights of all citizens to equal and meaningful participation in the democratic or political process. It diminishes the free-speech rights of non-wealthy voters and candidates whose voices are muffled by those who can afford to monopolize political communications. Additionally, the current system fuels the public perception of conflicts of interest and the domination of special money interests. That perception undermines the electorate’s confidence in the democratic process. It also makes it very difficult for qualified candidates without access to large contributors or personal fortunes to mount competitive campaigns. Because it places challengers at a distinct disadvantage, the system inhibits the free exchange of ideas and communication with the electorate.

       The legislature finds and declares that providing a voluntary clean elections campaign finance system would enhance democracy. It would help eliminate the deleterious influence of large contributions on the political process, remove access to wealth as a major determinant of a citizen’s influence within the political process, and restore the meaning of the principle of “one person, one vote.” It would also help restore the rights of all citizens to equal and meaningful participation in the democratic process. Instituting a public financing program would restore the free-speech rights of non-wealthy candidates and voters by providing candidates with resources with which to communicate ideas with the electorate. Such a system would thus help enhance the First Amendment rights of the electorate and candidates to be heard in the political process. It would help restore the core First Amendment value of open and robust debate in the political process. It would also diminish the electorate’s perception of domination of special interests and strengthen the public’s confidence in the democratic process and institutions. By providing for public financing, this act also addresses the genuine concern about the amount of time and effort that a candidate must devote to raising campaign funds.

      § ___. The election law is amended by adding a new article 14-A to read

as follows:

      ARTICLE 14-A—CLEAN ELECTION CAMPAIGN FINANCE FUND

      Section

      14-150. Definitions.

      14-152. Eligibility and other requirements.

      14-154. Qualified campaign expenditures.

      14-156. Campaign contributions.

      14-158. Optional clean election campaign financing.

      14-160. Grant amounts for primary and general election campaigns.

      14-162. Office holders accounts.

      14-164. Power of board of elections.

      14-166. New York state clean election campaign finance fund.

      14-168. Disbursal of revenue for clean election campaign financing.

      14-170. Examinations and audits; repayments.

      14-172. Penalties.

      14-174. Campaigns for office not subject to this article.

      14-176. Reports.

      § 14-150. Definitions. For purposes of this article, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

 1. The term “authorized committee” shall mean a political committee that has been authorized by one or more candidates to aid or take part in the elections of such candidate or candidates and that has filed a statement that such candidate or candidates have authorized such political committee pursuant to section 14-112 of this chapter.

      2. The term “board” shall mean the New York State Campaign Finance Board. 

      3. The term “contribution” shall mean: (a) any gift, subscription, advance, or deposit of money or any thing of value, made in connection with the nomination for election, or election, of any candidate; (b) any funds received by a political committee from another political committee; (c) any payment, by any person other than a candidate or his or her principal committee, made in connection with the nomination for election, or election, of any candidate, including but not limited to compensation for the personal services of any individual that are rendered in connection with a candidate’s election or nomination without charge; provided however, that none of the foregoing shall be deemed a contribution if it is made, taken or performed by a person or a political committee independent of the candidate or his or her agents or principal committee pursuant to section 14-112 of this chapter. For purposes of this subdivision, the term “independent of the candidate or his or her agents or principal committee pursuant to section 14-112 of this chapter” shall mean that the candidate or his or her agents or principal committee did not authorize, request, suggest, foster or cooperate in any such activity; and provided further, that the term “contribution” shall not include:

      (i) the value of services provided without compensation by individuals who volunteer a portion or all of their time on behalf of a candidate or political committee,

      (ii) the use of real or personal property and the cost of invitations, food and beverages voluntarily provided by an individual to a candidate or political committee on the individual’s residential premises for candidate-related activities to the extent such services do not exceed five hundred dollars in value,

      (iii) the travel expenses of any individual who on his or her own behalf volunteers his or her personal services to any candidate or political committee to the extent such expenses are not reimbursed and do not exceed five hundred dollars in value, and

      (iv) party expenditures by a party committee to the extent that the total of such party expenditures under paragraphs 8(a) and 8(d) or this section do not exceed the following amounts: two-hundred thousand dollars for a candidate for governor in a general election; one-hundred-thousand-dollars for a candidate for comptroller or attorney general in a general election; forty thousand dollars for a candidate for senator in a general or special election and twenty-thousand-dollars for a candidate for assembly in a general or special election.

      4. The term “covered election” shall mean any primary election for nomination as a party candidate, general election or special election for election, to the office of governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, comptroller, senator or member of assembly.

      5. The term “general election campaign period” shall mean the period beginning the day after the primary and ending thirty days after the general election.

      6. The term “independent expenditure” shall mean an expenditure by any person, political party or other entity other than a candidate’s principal committee that is made for a communication that expressly advocates the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate in a covered election that is made without participation, cooperation or coordination or consultation with any candidate, candidate’s committee or persons working on behalf of a candidate or any communication that names or depicts a clearly identified candidate and is disseminated twenty-one or fewer days before the election.

      7. The term “non-participating candidate” shall mean a candidate who rejects clean election campaign financing and chooses to run in an election with campaign contributions raised from private sources, or who otherwise is ineligible or fails to qualify for clean election campaign financing. Non-participating candidates are ineligible to receive clean election campaign financing or other benefits as defined by this article.

      8. The term “party expenditure” shall mean an expenditure by a party committee for the benefit of a candidate or candidate committee for: 
 (a) The preparation, display or mailing or other distribution of a party candidate listing. As used in this subparagraph, “party candidate listing” means any communication that meets the following criteria: (i) the communication lists the name or names of candidates for election to public office, (ii) the communication is distributed through public advertising such as broadcast stations, cable television, newspapers or similar media, or through direct mail, telephone, electronic mail, publicly accessible sites on the Internet or personal delivery, (iii) the treatment of all candidates in the communication is substantially similar, and (iv) the content of the communication is limited to (A) for each such candidate, identifying information, including photographs, the office sought, the office currently held by the candidate, if any, the party enrollment of the candidate, a brief statement concerning the candidate’s positions, philosophy, goals, accomplishments or biography and the positions, philosophy, goals or accomplishments of the candidate’s party, (B) encouragement to vote for each such candidate, and (C) information concerning voting, including voting hours and locations; 
 (b) A document in printed or electronic form, including a party platform, a copy of an issue paper, information pertaining to the requirements of this title, a list of registered voters and voter identification information, which document is created or maintained by a party committee, for the general purposes of party building and is provided to a candidate who is a member of the party that has established such party committee; 
 (c) A campaign event at which a candidate or candidates are present; 
 (d) The retention of the services of an advisor to provide assistance relating to campaign organization, financing, accounting, strategy, law or media; or 
 (e) The use of offices, telephones, computers and similar equipment which does not result in additional cost to the party committee.

      9. The term “political committee” shall have the meaning set forth in section 14-100 of this chapter.

      10. The term “principal committee” shall mean the authorized committee designated by a candidate pursuant to this article.

 11. The term “qualified campaign expenditure” shall mean an expenditure for which clean election campaign funds may be used.

      12. The term “qualified candidate” shall mean any candidate for nomination for election, or election, to the office of governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, senator or member of the assembly who qualifies for clean election campaign funds by collecting the required number of qualifying contributions and agreeing to other requirements specified herein.

      13. The term “qualifying contribution” shall mean a contribution of at least five dollars and no more than one-hundred dollars per contribution which is made to the principle committee and which is counted toward the aggregate number of qualifying contributions needed to meet the threshold amount for a specific office. A contribution shall be deemed a qualifying contribution only if made by check, money order or in cash and only if accompanied by a signed statement that: (a) the contribution is intended to be a contribution to support the election of a candidate seeking to qualify for a covered election; (b) the contribution was made from the contributor’s own funds; and (c) the contributor received nothing of value in exchange for the contribution. Any contributions that do not meet the requirements set forth in this article shall be returned to the contributor

      14. The term “qualifying period” shall mean the period during which participating candidates collect qualifying contributions.

      15. The term “threshold for eligibility” shall mean the total amount of qualifying contributions that a participating candidate and his or her principal committee must receive in order for such candidate to qualify for clean election campaign funding pursuant to this article.

      16. The term “transfer” shall mean any exchange of funds or any thing of value between political committees authorized by the same candidate pursuant to section 14-112 of this chapter and taking part in his or her campaign.

      17. The term “office holder account” shall refer to a political committee established under § 14-162 of this Act.

      § 14-152. Eligibility and other requirements. 1. To be eligible for clean elections campaign funding under this article, a candidate for nomination for election or election must:

      (a) meet all the requirements of law to have his or her name on the ballot;

      (b) be a candidate for governor, lieutenant governor, comptroller, attorney general, state senate or assembly in a primary, general or special election and meet the threshold for eligibility set forth in subdivision subdivisions three and four of this section;

      (c) choose to participate in the clean election campaign funding provisions of this article, by filing a written certification in such form as may be prescribed by the board, which sets forth his or her acceptance of and agreement to comply with the terms and conditions for the provision of such funds; 

      (d) obtain and furnish to the board and his or her principal committee any information the board may request relating to his or her campaign expenditures or contributions and furnish such documentation and other proof of compliance with this article as may be requested by such board;

      (e) notify the board in the candidate’s written certification as to: (i) the existence of each authorized committee authorized by such candidate that has not been terminated, (ii) whether any such committee also has been authorized by any other candidate, and (iii) if the candidate has authorized more than one authorized committee, which authorized committee has been designated by the candidate as the candidate’s principal committee for the election(s) covered by the candidate’s certification; provided, that such principal committee (i) shall be the only committee authorized by such candidate to aid or otherwise take part in the election(s) covered by the candidate’s certification, (ii) shall not be an authorized committee of any other candidate, and (iii) shall not have been authorized or otherwise active for any election prior to the election(s) covered by the candidate’s certification. The use of an entity other than the designated principal committee to aid or otherwise take part in the election(s) covered by the candidate’s certification shall be a violation of this section and shall trigger the application to such entity of all provisions of this article governing principal committees;

      (f) maintain and his or her principal committee must maintain such records of receipts and expenditures for a covered election as required by the board;

      (g) not make and his or her principal committee must not make expenditures which in the aggregate exceed the grant of public funds set forth in section 14-160 of this article plus the amount of qualifying contributions allowed pursuant to subdivision four of this section;

      (h) agree not to accept aggregate party expenditures from the committee or committees of any political party in excess of the amount specified in subdivision 3(iii) of section 14-152 of this article;

      (i) agree to participate in at least two public debates with other qualified candidates prior to the date of a primary election or special election and at least three debates with other qualified candidates prior to the date of a general election. Such debates shall be established under regulations promulgated by the board of elections. If a candidate fails to participate in any debate required under this section before an election, the candidate shall be liable for return of moneys previously received for use by the candidate to pay election campaign expenses and shall be ineligible to receive any further clean election campaign funds for that election. For purposes of this subdivision, each primary, general, special shall be considered a separate election; and

      (j) satisfy any claim made by the board for the payment of civil penalties or repayment of public funds that remains outstanding against such candidate or his or her principal committee from a prior covered election, if (i) the candidate had written notice of such potential claim and ineligibility to receive public funds prior to filing a written certification for the current covered election pursuant to paragraph (c) of this subdivision, or (ii) in the event no such timely notice has been given pursuant to subparagraph (i), the candidate has been given an opportunity to present to the board reasons he or she should be eligible to receive public funds.

      2. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, rule or regulation to the contrary, the qualifying period shall commence on the first day of January of the year in which the election or elections for which the candidate seeks to qualify will be held and end no later than thirty days before the date of the primary election in that same year.

      3. The qualification period in a special election shall begin the day the election is announced. Candidates shall have up to fourteen days before the date of the special election to collect qualifying contributions. The number of qualifying contributions shall be half of the number of contributions required in a general election. Funds shall be released to special election candidates within three days of submission of qualifying contributions;

      4. (a) The threshold for eligibility for clean election campaign funding for participating candidates in a general election shall be in the case of:

      (i) candidates for state senate must collect at least one thousand qualifying contributions from persons registered to vote in the state senate district. The total amount of qualifying contributions collected by a candidate for state senate shall not exceed $40,000. Any amounts in excess of this limit shall be donated to the New York State clean election campaign finance fund.

            (ii) candidates for state assembly must collect four hundred qualifying contributions from persons registered to vote in the state assembly district. The total amount of qualifying contributions collected by a candidate for state assembly shall not exceed $20,000. Any amounts in excess of this limit shall be donated to the New York State clean election campaign finance fund.

      (iii) candidates for governor must collect fifteen thousand qualifying contributions, including at least two hundred fifty contributions from persons registered to vote in each of a majority of the congressional districts of the state. The total amount of qualifying contributions collected by a candidate for Governor shall not exceed an amount equal to four hundred and fifty thousand dollars. Any amounts in excess of this limit shall be donated to the New York State clean election campaign finance fund.

      (iv) candidates for lieutenant governor, attorney general and comptroller must collect ten thousand qualifying contributions, including at least one hundred fifty contributions from persons registered to vote from a majority of the congressional districts of the state. The total amount of qualifying contributions collected by a candidate for governor, attorney general or comptroller shall not exceed an amount equal to three-hundred thousand dollars. Any amounts in excess of this limit shall be donated to the New York State clean election campaign finance fund.

      (b) In addition to the requirements of paragraph (a) of this subdivision in order to be eligible for clean election campaign financing for the general elections, the candidate must have participated in the primary election and receive the highest number of votes of the candidates contesting the primary election from his or her respective party and have won the party’s nomination. This provision shall not apply to independent candidates, whose eligibility requirements are set forth in this section;

      (c) In addition to the requirements of paragraph (a) of this subdivision, in order to be eligible to receive clean election campaign funds in a primary election a qualified candidate must agree that in the event he or she is a candidate for such office in any other election held in the same calendar year, that he or she will be bound in each such other election by the eligibility requirements and all other provisions of this article.

      5. No principal committee of a qualified candidate for a covered election may be authorized to aid or take part in the elections of more than one candidate.

 6. Regardless of whether a candidate demonstrates eligibility for clean election campaign financing under this article, a candidate who has filed a written certification in accordance with subdivision one of this section and his or her principal committee are nonetheless required to abide by the requirements of paragraphs (d), (e), (f), (g), (h) and (i) of subdivision one of this section.

 7. A qualified candidate who receives clean election campaign funds shall not accept or spend any funds other than qualifying contributions up to the limit specified in paragraph a of subdivision 3 of this section and clean election campaign funds.

 8. A qualified candidate who receives clean election campaign funds shall identify the name of the candidate on all printed campaign literature, and acknowledge therein that clean election campaign funds were used in preparation of the same. Additionally, all television advertisements and radio advertisements must include the voice of the candidate.

      § 14-154. Qualified campaign expenditures. 1. Clean election campaign funds provided under the provisions of this article may be used only for expenditures by a principal committee on behalf of a candidate to further the candidate’s nomination for election or election during the calendar year in which the primary or general election in which the candidate is seeking nomination for election or election is held.

      2. Such funds may not be used for:

      (a) an expenditure in violation of any law;

      (b) payments made to the candidate or a spouse, child, grandchild, parent, grandparent, brother or sister of the candidate or spouse of such child, grandchild, parent, grandparent, brother or sister, or to a business entity in which the candidate or any such person has an ownership interest or serves as an employee, officer or member of the board of directors;

     (c) payments in excess of the fair market value of services, materials, facilities or other things of value received in exchange;

     (d) any expenditures made in any calendar year after the candidate has been finally disqualified or had his or her petitions finally declared invalid by the applicable board of elections or a court of competent jurisdiction, except as otherwise permitted by subdivision five of section 14-164 of this article, or after the only remaining opponent of the candidate has been finally disqualified.

     (e) payments in cash, except as prescribed in subdivision three of section 14-166 of this article;

     (f) any contribution, transfer or loan made to another candidate or political committee; or

     (g) gifts, except brochures, buttons, signs and other printed campaign material.

     § 14-156. Campaign contributions. Qualified candidates must furnish complete campaign records, including all records of qualifying contributions and expenditures to the board on a quarterly basis or on request by the board.

      § 14-158. Optional clean election campaign financing. Each qualified candidate in a covered election may obtain payment to the principal committee designated by such candidate pursuant to this article from clean election campaign funds for qualified campaign expenditures, in accordance with the provisions of this article, and subject to appropriation.

      1. No such clean election campaign funds shall be paid to a principal committee unless the board determines that the qualified candidate has met the eligibility requirements of this article. Payment shall not exceed the amounts specified in this article, and shall be made only in accordance with the provisions of this article. Such payment may be made only to the qualified candidate’s principal committee. No clean election campaign funds shall be used except as reimbursement or payment for qualified campaign expenditures actually and lawfully incurred.

      2. Clean election campaign funds shall be paid to a qualified candidate’s principal committee based on the following schedule.

      (a) A candidate for a primary election shall receive twenty-five percent of the grant of public funds for the primary election within five days after certification by the board that the candidate has met the eligibility requirements for participating candidates including approval of qualifying contributions under subdivision four of § 14-152 of this article. Such candidate shall receive the remaining seventy-five percent of the grant of public funds for the primary election within five days after [the candidate has qualified for the ballot either by convention or petition; need proper legal language here]. However, the remaining seventy-five percent of the grant of public funds will not be given to a candidate who is unopposed in the primary election.

      (b) A candidate who receives a party nomination for the general election and who qualifies for clean elections funds for the general election shall receive the grant of public funds for the general election within three days after the date of the primary election.

      (c) A candidate who is nominated for the general election ballot by independent nominating petition and who qualifies for clean elections funds for the general election shall receive the grant of public funds for the general election within three days after meeting all eligibility requirements for a participating candidate.

      3. Qualified candidates who are unopposed in the general election shall receive 35% of the grant of clean elections funds for a candidate for general election for such election.

      4. A qualified candidate seeking or obtaining nomination for election by more than one party shall be deemed one candidate, and shall not receive additional clean election campaign funds or be authorized to accept contributions in excess of the maximum contribution applicable pursuant to subdivision four of section 14-152 of this article or make additional expenditures by reason of such candidate seeking or obtaining nomination for election by more than one party.

  5. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, if there is an additional day for voting held pursuant to section 3-108 of this chapter or an election held pursuant to court order, a qualified candidate in such election shall obtain payment for qualified campaign expenditures in an amount equal to twenty-five cents for each one dollar of clean election campaign funds paid pursuant to this article to the candidate’s principal committee for the preceding election. Except as provided by this subdivision, no additional clean election campaign funds shall be provided to any candidate for such election or additional day for voting, except as under subdivision six of section 14-160 of this article.

     § 14-160. Grant amounts for primary and general election campaigns. 1. (a) A qualified candidate in a primary election for nomination for senator shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the primary campaign in the amount of one dollar and fifteen cents per each enrolled voter in the candidate’s party residing within the senate district as of the first day of January of the year in which the primary election is to be held.

      (b) A qualified candidate for state senate who has been nominated either as a party candidate or an independent candidate shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the general election campaign in the amount of $150,000.

      2. (a) A qualified candidate in a primary election for nomination for member of the assembly shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the primary campaign in the amount of one dollar and fifty cents per each enrolled voter in the candidate’s party residing within the assembly district as of the first day of January of the year in which the primary election is to be held.

      (b) A qualified candidate for state assembly who has been nominated either as a party candidate or an independent candidate shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the general election campaign in the amount of $100,000.

      3. (a) A qualified candidate in a primary election for nomination for governor shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the primary campaign in the amount of one dollar per each enrolled voter in the candidate’s party residing within the state as of the first day of January of the year in which the primary election is to be held.

      (b) A qualified candidate for governor who has been nominated either as a party candidate or an independent candidate shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the general election campaign in the amount of seven million five hundred thousand dollars..

      4. (a) A qualified candidate in a primary election for nomination for lieutenant governor, attorney general or comptroller shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the primary campaign in the amount of sixty cents per each enrolled voter in the candidate’s party residing within the state as of the first day of January of the year in which the primary election is to be held.

      (b) A qualified candidate for attorney general or comptroller who has been nominated either as a party candidate or an independent candidate shall be eligible for clean election campaign funds for the general election campaign in the amount of four million dollars.

       5. (b) Not later than the first day of March in the year two thousand fourteen, and every fourth year thereafter the board shall (i) determine the percentage difference between the average over a calendar year of the consumer price index for all urban areas published by the United States bureau of labor statistics for the twelve months preceding the beginning of such calendar year and the average over the calendar year two thousand seven of such consumer price index; (ii) adjust each public grant formula for primary elections applicable pursuant to this subdivision by the amount of such percentage difference to the nearest five-one-hundredths of a dollar; (iii) adjust each public grant for general elections applicable pursuant to this subdivision by the amount of such percentage difference to the nearest thousand dollars; and (iv) publish such adjusted expenditure limitation in the state register. Such adjusted expenditure limitation shall be in effect for any election held before the next such adjustment.

       6. Additional funds from the fund shall be awarded to a qualified candidate when the total of campaign expenditures by non-participating candidates who oppose a qualified candidate and independent expenditures directed against the qualified candidate or in support of the qualified candidate’s opponent, exceeds one hundred percent of the public grant awarded to the candidate. An additional dollar shall be awarded for each dollar in excess of one hundred percent of the public grant, up to a total of four times the amount of said public grants. The board shall promulgate rules and regulations to govern the distribution of additional grants in such amounts and at such times that will ensure qualified candidates receive additional funds in an expeditious manner.

       7. Non-participating candidates and persons or entities making independent expenditures shall comply with all reporting requirements for political committees and candidates as provided in article fourteen of this chapter and pursuant to the rules and regulations promulgated by the board. In addition, twenty-one days before the date of a covered election in which a qualified candidate is running, non-participating candidates running against a qualified candidate in such election and any person or entity making independent expenditures in support of or in opposition to a qualified candidate in such election shall file a statement with the board reporting total campaign expenditures made or obligated to be made as of that date, and thereafter shall file additional statements with the board within twenty-four hours whenever total campaign expenditures made or obligated to be made increase by one thousand dollars or more.  

       § 14-162. Office holders accounts. A participating candidate who is elected to office in a general or special election may establish an office holder account, as long as such account meets the following requirements:

       1. The office holder account may only disburse funds during calendar years in which there is no primary or general election for the office held by the participating candidate and January 1 through July 1 of the calendar year of the primary or general election for said office.

       2. The maximum amount of funds that may be deposited in an office holders account and may be disbursed from an office holders account shall be: fifty thousand dollars for a governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general or comptroller; eighteen-thousand dollars for a senator; and twelve-thousand dollars for a member of the assembly.

       3. The only funds that may be received by an office holders account are: unspent funds from the candidate’s principal committee as established in subdivision 2(c) of section 14-170 of this article and additional funds that are collected from registered voters in the office holders jurisdiction and that meet the legal requirements of a qualifying contribution under subdivision t13 of section 14-150 paragraph of this article.

       4. All expenditures from office holders accounts must meet all the requirements of law for spending from a political committee and the requirements of § 14-154 of this Act. 

      § 14-164. Power of the board. 1. The board shall have the power to investigate all matters relating to the performance of its functions and any other matter relating to the proper administration of this article and for such purposes shall have the power to require the attendance and examine and take the testimony under oath of such persons as it shall deem necessary and to require the production of books, accounts, papers and other evidence relative to such investigation.

      2. The board may render advisory opinions with respect to questions arising under this article. Such advisory opinions may be rendered on the written request of a candidate, an officer of a political committee or member of the public, or may be rendered on its own initiative. The board shall make public its advisory opinions. The board shall develop a program for informing candidates and the public as to the purpose and effect of the provisions of this article. The board shall prepare and make available educational materials, including compliance manuals and summaries and explanations of the purposes and provisions of this article. These materials shall be prepared in plain language. The board shall prepare and make available materials, including, to the extent feasible, computer software, to facilitate the task of compliance with the disclosure and record-keeping requirements of this article.

      3. The board shall have the authority to promulgate such rules and regulations and provide such forms as it deems necessary for the administration of this article. The board shall promulgate regulations concerning the form in which contributions and expenditures are to be reported, the periods during which such reports must be filed and the verification required. The board shall require the filing of reports of contributions and expenditures for purposes of determining compliance with [sections XXX] of this article in accordance with the schedule specified by such board for the filing of campaign receipt and expenditure statements. The board may also require the filing of additional reports by qualified candidates and their principal committees as well as by non-participating candidates and their authorized committees and by persons or entities making independent expenditures, in furtherance of its duties under this article.

      4. The board shall develop a computer database that shall contain all information necessary for the proper administration of this chapter including information on contributions to and expenditures by candidates and their principal committees and distributions of moneys from the fund. Such database shall be accessible to the public.

      5. The board may administer a public campaign finance law at the request of other jurisdictions in New York, including any county, municipal or local government [is this the list; does this include all cities, towns, etc?]. The board shall except authority and responsibility for such administration if in the opinion of a majority of the board, the public campaign finance law enacted by said jurisdiction is substantially similar in administrative structure to covered elections in this article. Nothing in this provision shall require the state government to provide funds for the public financing of elections for other jurisdictions.

      6. The board may take such other actions as are necessary and proper to carry out the purposes of this article.

     § 14-166. New York state clean election campaign finance fund. 1. There is hereby established a special fund, to be known as the “New York state clean election campaign finance fund”. The monies in such fund may be expended by the board only as payments for qualified candidates in accordance with the provisions of this article.

     2. The fund shall be kept separate and shall be credited with all sums appropriated thereto, any donations received pursuant to subdivision seven of this section, all earnings accruing on such funds and any monies realized from the provisions of subdivision three of section 14-172 of this article.

      3. The moneys in such fund shall be made available to qualified candidates by the board upon its certification that such candidates qualify for such moneys.

      4. No moneys shall be made available to any qualified candidate who has been finally disqualified or whose designating or nominating petitions have been finally declared invalid by the applicable board of elections or a court of competent jurisdiction. Any payment from the fund in the possession of such a candidate or his or her authorized committees on the date of such final disqualification or invalidation may not thereafter be expended for any purpose except the payment of liabilities incurred in qualified campaign expenditures before such date and shall be promptly repaid to the fund.

      5. The board shall be empowered to accept donations to be credited to the fund.

      6. All qualified candidates who have been defeated in a primary or general election or who fail to remain as a candidate throughout a primary or general election campaign period or who have won in the general election shall return to the fund all unspent money that the candidate received from the fund.

       7. If at any time the board of elections determines that the clean elections campaign finance fund does not have sufficient revenues, or is likely to not have sufficient revenues, for payment to qualifying candidates under this article then it shall report this determination to the comptroller, along with the amount which will be necessary to provide qualifying candidates with financing pursuant to this article and a detailed statement of the assumptions and methodology on which such determination was based. No more than four days after receiving such a determination the comptroller shall transfer the amount determined by the board of elections to be necessary from the general fund to the clean elections campaign finance fund.

       8. The aggregate amount which may be provided to qualified candidates in any four-year election cycle from the fund shall not exceed one-tenth of-one-percent of the total expenditures made pursuant to appropriations made by law during such time period. If the amount of funds for which qualified candidates have qualified reaches or exceeds this level, the board of elections shall reduce, by an equal percentage for all candidates, the respective amount of public financing made available to qualified candidates.

      § 14-168. Disbursal of revenue for clean election campaign financing. 1. Upon certifying that a candidate is eligible for clean election campaign financing, the board of elections shall transfer the amount of public funds due to the candidate’s principal committee.

      2. A qualified candidate and his or her representative are prohibited from paying for campaign expenses in any way other than by funds from the candidate’s principal committee.       3. A petty cash fund may be established consistent with the other provisions of this article.

      (a) Qualified candidates may have a daily petty cash fund, for daily expenses, including food, newspapers, magazines, public telephones, and other minor necessities unrelated to the direct operating costs of the campaign. The daily maximum amount of the petty cash fund shall be established by the board.

      (b) All cash expenditures in excess of twenty-five dollars require a cash receipt specifying the item purchased and its purpose, its cost, and the place of purchase.

     § 14-170. Examinations and audits; repayments. 1. The board of elections is hereby empowered to audit and examine all matters relating to the performance of its functions and any other matter relating to the proper administration of this article. These audit and examination powers extend to all qualified candidates and their principal committees, to all non-participating candidates and their authorized committees, and to persons or entities making independent expenditures.

      2. (a) If the board determines that any portion of the payment made to the principal committee of a qualified candidate from the fund was in excess of the aggregate amount of payments which such candidate was eligible to receive pursuant to this article, it shall notify such committee and such committee shall pay to the fund an amount equal to the amount of excess payments. In the event that such committee shall fail to make such payment, such candidate shall, within 15 days of receiving notice of such failure from the board, make such payment to the fund.

      (b) If the board determines that any portion of the payment made to a principal committee of a qualified candidate from the fund was used for purposes other than qualified campaign expenditures, it shall notify such committee of the amount so disqualified and such committee shall pay to the fund an amount equal to such disqualified amount. In the event that such committee shall fail to make such payment, such candidate shall, within 15 days of receiving notice of such failure from the board, make such payment to the fund. 

      (c) If the total of contributions, other receipts, and payments from the fund received by a candidate’s principal committee exceed the total campaign expenditures of such committee for all covered elections held in the same calendar year, such committee shall use such excess funds to reimburse the fund for payments received by the principal committee from the fund during such calendar year. Such reimbursement shall be made not later than ten days after all liabilities have been paid and in any event, not later than June thirtieth of the year following such calendar year. At the time that all obligations are paid and no later than June thirtieth of the year following such calendar year any and all unspent funds in a principal committee must be transferred to an office holders account up the maximum allowable amount or paid to the clean elections campaign fund.

      3. If a qualified candidate whose principal committee has received clean election campaign funds is disqualified by a court of competent jurisdiction on the grounds that such candidate committed fraudulent acts in order to obtain a place on the ballot and such decision is not reversed, such candidate and his or her principal committee shall pay to the fund an amount equal to the total of clean election campaign funds received by such principal committee.

     § 14-172. Penalties. 1. Any qualified candidate and his or her principal committee or any non-participating candidate and his or her authorized committee that fails to file in a timely manner a statement or record required to be filed by this article or the rules of the board in implementation thereof or who violates any other provision of this article or rule promulgated thereunder, and any committee treasurer or any other agent of a qualified or non-participating candidate who commits such a violation, shall be subject to a civil penalty in an amount not in excess of XXX.

      2. (a) In addition to the penalties provided in subdivision one of this section, if the aggregate amount of expenditures by a candidate’s principal committee exceeds the amount such candidate is eligible to receive and to spend pursuant to this article, such candidate and his or her principal committee shall be subject to a civil penalty in an amount not to exceed three times the sum by which such expenditures exceed the applicable limitation.

      (b) In addition to the penalties provided in subdivision one of this section, a qualified candidate or his or her principal committee that have been found by the board to have violated a provision of this chapter by failing to provide any response to a draft audit report sent to the candidate after the election by the board pursuant to section 3-710 of this chapter, shall be subject to a civil penalty for such violation of up to ten percent of the total public funds received by such candidate.

      3. The intentional or knowing furnishing of any false or fictitious evidence, books or information to the board under this article, or the inclusion in any evidence, books, or information so furnished of a misrepresentation of a material fact, or the falsifying or concealment of any evidence, books, or information relevant to any audit by the board or the intentional or knowing violation of any other provision of this article shall be punishable as a class A misdemeanor in addition to any other penalty as may be provided under law. The board shall seek to recover any clean election campaign funds obtained as a result of such conduct. Any monies so obtained shall be deposited into the fund.

     § 14-174. Campaigns for office not subject to this article. Contributions, loans, guarantees and other security for such loans used and expenditures made toward the payment of liabilities incurred by a candidate in an election held prior to the effective date of this section or in which he or she did not choose to participate in the clean election campaign funding provisions of this article, or in a campaign for public office other than one covered by this article, shall not be subject to the requirements and limitations of this article.

     § 14-176. Reports. 1. The board shall review and evaluate the effect of this article upon the conduct of election campaigns in the state and shall submit a report to the governor and the legislature on or before the first of September in the calendar year after this section shall have taken effect and at any other time upon the request of the governor or the legislature and at such other times as the board deems appropriate, containing:

      (a) the number and names and offices of candidates qualifying for and choosing to receive clean election campaign funds pursuant to this article, and of candidates failing to qualify or otherwise not choosing to receive such funds, in each election during the period since the effective date of this article or since the end of the previous four-year reporting period;

      (b) the amount of clean election campaign funds provided to the principal committee of each candidate pursuant to this article and the contributions received and expenditures made by each such candidate and his or her principal committee, in each election during the period since the effective date of this article or since the end of the previous four-year reporting period;

      (c) recommendations as to whether the provisions of this article governing maximum contribution amounts, thresholds for eligibility and expenditure limitations should be amended and setting forth the amount of, and reasons for, any amendments it recommends;

      (d) analysis of the effect of this article on election campaigns, including its effect on the sources and amounts of private financing, the level of campaign expenditures, voter participation, the number of candidates and the candidate’s ability to campaign effectively for elected office;

      (e) a review of the procedures utilized in providing funds to candidates; and

      (f) such recommendations for changes in this article as it deems appropriate.

       The tax law is amended by adding a new section 626-a to read as follows:§ 626-a. The clean election campaign finance fund. Effective for any taxable year commencing on or after the first of January next succeeding the effective date of this section, an individual in any taxable year may elect to have an amount up to one hundred dollars of any tax other-wise payable deposited to the clean election campaign finance fund. Such contribution shall not reduce the amount of state tax owed by such individual. The commissioner shall include a space on the personal income tax return to enable a taxpayer to authorize such deposit. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, all revenues collected pursuant to this section shall be credited to the clean election campaign finance fund and used only for those purposes enumerated in section 14-165 of the election law.

[The following section deals with the lack of sufficient enforcement will or authority at the Board of Elections. The section below is from A. 5506 (2006), which restructures the BOE. There are two other possible approaches. One is to create a campaign finance unit in the current board, with expanded jurisdiction and independence. Another is to create a new Campaign Finance Board with the structure and powers below and removing campaign finance matters from the State Board of Elections. The goal of any approach must to create an administrative agency with the authority and structure to implement the law regardless of partisan consequences.]

      § 3-100. State board of elections [Campaign Finance Board]. 1. There shall be a state board of elections [campaign finance board] consisting of five members. One member of the board shall be appointed by the governor, who shall be the chairperson, one member shall be appointed by the temporary president of the senate, one member shall be appointed by the speaker of the assembly, one member shall be appointed by the senate minority leader, one member shall be appointed by the assembly minority leader. The members shall first be appointed to serve as follows:

      (a) one member appointed by the governor, as chairperson, for a term of five years.

      (b) one member appointed by the speaker of the assembly for a term of three years;

      (c) one member appointed by the temporary president of the senate for a term of three years;

      (d) one member appointed by the senate minority leader for a term of two years;

      (e) one member appointed by the assembly minority leader for a term of two years;

      Each term shall commence on April first, two thousand six. Thereafter, each member shall be appointed for a term of five years according to the original manner of appointment. In case of a vacancy in the office of a member, a member shall be appointed to serve for the remainder of the unexpired term according to the original manner of appointment. Each member shall be a resident of the state, registered to vote therein. Each member shall agree not to make contributions to any candidate for nomination for election, or election, to the office of governor, lieutenant governor, comptroller, attorney general or member of the legislature or any other office that the board supervises. No member shall serve as an officer of a political party or be a candidate or participate in any capacity in a campaign by a candidate for nomination for election or election to the office of governor, lieutenant governor, comptroller, attorney general or member of the legislature or any other office that the board supervises. Officers and employees of the state or any state agency, lobbyists required to file a statement of registration under the lobbying act and the employees of such lobbyists shall not be eligible to be members of the board. Members of the board shall be selected solely on the basis of merit and without regard to political affiliation and shall not be disqualified from continuing in office for any reason other than unfitness or inability to perform the duties involved.

      2. The  members of the board shall be compensated at the rate of one hundred dollars per calendar day when performing the work of the board.

      3. The board may employ necessary staff, including an executive director and a counsel, and make necessary expenditures subject to appropriation. The board may employ such staff, including legal and accounting staff, as are necessary for providing technical assistance to prospective and participating candidates, for the purpose of promoting understanding of, participation in, and compliance with the requirements of the campaign finance program created by article fourteen-A of this chapter.

      4. No  member of the board shall be removed from office except for cause and upon notice and hearing.

      Section 3-104 of the election law is amended by adding a new subdivision 3-a to read as follows:

      3-a. If after an investigation, the state board of elections finds reasonable cause to believe that a violation of article fourteen of this chapter has taken place, it may institute an adjudicatory proceeding in accordance with section 3-105 of this title for the purpose of determining whether or not a violation has taken place and assessing a civil penalty pursuant to section 14-126 of this chapter.

      § 10. Subdivision 4 of section 3-104 of the election law, as redesignated by chapter 9 of the laws of 1978, is amended to read as follows:

      The state [or other] board of elections may, where appropriate, commence a judicial proceeding [with respect to the filing or failure to file any statement of receipts, expenditures, or contributions, under the provisionsseeking civil penalties pursuant to subdivision one of section 14-126 of this chapter[, and the state board of elections may direct the appropriate other board of elections to commence such proceeding].

       § 11. The election law is amended by adding a new section 3-105 to read as follows:

       § 3-105. Adjudicatory proceeding. 1. Except as otherwise provided in this section, an adjudicatory proceeding to determine whether or not a violation of article fourteen of this chapter has taken place and to assess a civil penalty pursuant to section 14-126 of this chapter shall be conducted in accordance with article three of the state administrative procedure act.

       2. Such proceeding shall be conducted by a hearing officer selected on a random basis by the state board of elections from an active list of at least six attorneys who have applied for and been approved by the board as hearing officers. Such hearing officer shall be a state board of elections commissioner or an independent contractor who shall be compensated on a per diem basis at a rate fixed by the board in its regulations promulgated pursuant to this section.

       3. The hearing officer shall prepare and submit to the state board of elections, together with the entire record of the proceeding, a written report containing findings of fact, conclusions of law, and recommendations concerning the imposition of a civil penalty.

       4. After reviewing the record, findings, and recommendations of the hearing officer, the state board shall make a determination as to whether or not a violation has occurred and, whenever appropriate, impose a penalty consistent with section 14-126 of this chapter. Regardless of whether or not a penalty is assessed, the state board of elections shall issue a written determination setting forth its findings and conclusions.

       5. The state board of elections shall promulgate rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this section and subdivision three-a of section 3-104 of this title, including, but not limited to, procedural rules as provided for in subdivision three of section three hundred one of the state administrative procedure act, factors to be considered in setting a penalty amount pursuant to subdivision one of section 14-126 of this chapter, a per diem compensation rate for hearing officers, and any qualifications for hearing officers which the board deems necessary in order to insure their objectivity and independence. Concerning such qualifications, the rules and regulations shall provide, at a minimum, that hearing officers be members in good standing of the bar of this state, that they refrain from appearing before the state board of elections or from any activities as a lobbyist, and that they hold no public office or party position.

       6. Nothing in this section shall be construed as limiting any existing powers of the state board of elections, including, but not limited to, its investigative powers and its power to refer violations warranting criminal prosecution to the appropriate district attorney.

       § 12. If any section of this act or any part thereof shall be adjudged by any court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment shall not affect, impair or invalidate the remainder or any other section or part thereof.

       § 13. This act shall take effect on the first of January next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law; provided however that the amendments to subdivision (e) of section 1-e of the legislative law made by section four of this act, shall not affect the repeal of such section and shall be deemed repealed therewith [this is from A. 5506; don’t know what it refers to.]

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