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Commission releases report outlining how elections will be funded in New York

A commission released its 144-page report Sunday evening detailing its recommendations for how campaigns will be funded in New York through a system of taxpayer funds matched to lowered contribution rates and tougher thresholds for parties to achieve ballot access that could spell trouble for minor ballot lines.

The report’s recommendations are the culmination of the work of a commission appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the top lawmakers in the Assembly and Senate, the product of what amounted to a punt earlier this year amid a contentious debate over publicly financed elections that has been conducted in the state for more than a generation.

The findings of the commission have the force of law once phased-in deadlines take effect. The higher party thresholds will be in effect for the 2020 election year; the public financing program will be in effect for legislative races in 2024 and statewide races in 2026.

Lawmakers can act to change the recommendations, however, but so far little movement has been created to do so as the details of commission’s work were made public and voted on last week.

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