Bill S7181-2013

Relates to contributions to candidates and political committees

Relates to contributions to candidates and political committees.

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  • May 2, 2014: REFERRED TO ELECTIONS

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S7181

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the election law, in relation to contributions to candidates and political committees

PURPOSE:

This proposal would lower contribution limits for statewide candidates to $6,000 for the primary and $6,000 for the general election. Senate candidates would be limited to $4,000 for the primary and $4,000 for the general election and Assembly candidates would be limited to $2,000 for the primary, and $2,000 for the general election.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

Section one of this bill lowers the contribution limits referenced above as contained in article 14 of the election law.

Section two sets forth the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION:

This bill will drastically reduce contribution limits to political campaigns. It is widely believed that New York's campaign finance laws need substantial revision to ensure the integrity of elections in the state. This bill addresses one of the ways that New York's laws differ significantly from the laws of other states that regulate campaign contributions: by addressing the sky high contribution limits for candidates.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

New bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:

None to the state.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This act shall take effect immediately.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7181 IN SENATE May 2, 2014 ___________
Introduced by Sen. GIANARIS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Elections AN ACT to amend the election law, in relation to contributions to candi- dates and political committees THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision 1 of section 14-114 of the election law, as amended by chapter 79 of the laws of 1992, paragraphs a and b as amended by chapter 659 of the laws of 1994, is amended to read as follows: 1. The following limitations apply to all contributions to candidates for election to any public office or for nomination for any such office, or for election to any party positions, and to all contributions to political committees working directly or indirectly with any candidate to aid or participate in such candidate's nomination or election, other than any contributions to any party committee or constituted committee: a. In any election for a public office to be voted on by the voters of the entire state, or for nomination to any such office, no contributor may make a contribution to any candidate or political committee, and no candidate or political committee may accept any contribution from any contributor, which is in the aggregate amount greater than: (i) in the case of any nomination to public office, the product of the total number of enrolled voters in the candidate's party in the state, excluding voters in inactive status, multiplied by $.005, but such amount shall be not [less than four thousand dollars nor] more than [twelve] SIX thou- sand dollars [as increased or decreased by the cost of living adjustment described in paragraph c of this subdivision,] and (ii) in the case of any election to [a] SUCH public office, [twenty-five] SIX thousand dollars [as increased or decreased by the cost of living adjustment described in paragraph c of this subdivision]; provided however, that the maximum amount which may be so contributed or accepted, in the aggregate, from any candidate's child, parent, grandparent, brother and sister, and the spouse of any such persons, shall not exceed in the case of any nomination to public office an amount equivalent to the product of the number of enrolled voters in the candidate's party in the state,
excluding voters in inactive status, multiplied by $.025, and in the case of any election for a public office, an amount equivalent to the product of the number of registered voters in the state excluding voters in inactive status, multiplied by $.025. b. In any other election for party position or for election to a public office or for nomination for any such office, no contributor may make a contribution to any candidate or political committee and no candidate or political committee may accept any contribution from any contributor, which is in the aggregate amount greater than: (i) in the case of any election for party position, or for nomination to public office, the product of the total number of enrolled voters in the candi- date's party in the district in which he is a candidate, excluding voters in inactive status, multiplied by $.05, and (ii) in the case of any election for a public office, the product of the total number of registered voters in the district, excluding voters in inactive status, multiplied by $.05, however in the case of a nomination within the city of New York for the office of mayor, public advocate or comptroller, such amount shall be not less than four thousand dollars nor more than twelve thousand dollars as increased or decreased by the cost of living adjustment described in paragraph c of this subdivision; in the case of an election within the city of New York for the office of mayor, public advocate or comptroller, twenty-five thousand dollars as increased or decreased by the cost of living adjustment described in paragraph c of this subdivision; in the case of a nomination OR ELECTION for state senator, four thousand dollars [as increased or decreased by the cost of living adjustment described in paragraph c of this subdivision; in the case of an election for state senator, six thousand two hundred fifty dollars as increased or decreased by the cost of living adjustment described in paragraph c of this subdivision]; in the case of an election or nomination for a member of the assembly, [twenty-five hundred] TWO THOUSAND dollars [as increased or decreased by the cost of living adjustment described in paragraph c of this subdivision; but in no event shall any such maximum exceed fifty thousand dollars or be less than one thousand dollars]; provided however, that the maximum amount which may be so contributed or accepted, in the aggregate, from any candidate's child, parent, grandparent, brother and sister, and the spouse of any such persons, shall not exceed in the case of any election for party position or nomination for public office an amount equivalent to the number of enrolled voters in the candidate's party in the district in which he is a candidate, excluding voters in inactive status, multiplied by $.25 and in the case of any election to public office, an amount equivalent to the number of registered voters in the district, excluding voters in inactive status, multiplied by $.25; or twelve hundred fifty dollars, whichever is greater, or in the case of a nomination or election of a state senator, twenty thousand dollars, whichever is greater, or in the case of a nomination or election of a member of the assembly twelve thousand five hundred dollars, whichever is greater, but in no event shall any such maximum exceed one hundred thousand dollars. c. At the beginning of each fourth calendar year, commencing in [nineteen hundred ninety-five] TWO THOUSAND TWENTY-ONE, the state board shall determine the percentage of the difference between the most recent available monthly consumer price index for all urban consumers published by the United States bureau of labor statistics and such consumer price index published for the same month four years previously. The amount of each contribution limit fixed AND EXPRESSLY IDENTIFIED FOR ADJUSTMENT in
this subdivision shall be adjusted by the amount of such percentage difference to the closest one hundred dollars by the state board which, not later than the first day of February in each such year, shall issue a regulation publishing the amount of each such contribution limit. Each contribution limit as so adjusted shall be the contribution limit in effect for any election held before the next such adjustment. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

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