Starting this election season, public funding can be used in state races in New York, including contests for the NYS Assembly and Senate, and as a result, there's an uptick in candidates challenging incumbents locally.

Specifically, in the 53rd State Senate District currently held by Senator Joe Griffo, there are now three potential challengers so far who could be eligible to have their campaign partially funded by the taxpayer.

Republican Wil Fiacco, and Democrats Jack Myers and Austin Paddock have each announced their intentions to challenge Senator Griffo in the November election.

The new election law comes with specific rules in order to qualify for the funding.

• Be a candidate in a covered election (Primary/General/Special) for a covered office;

•Be opposed by a candidate (not including write-ins);

•Not make expenditures from personal funds (including spouse or unemancipated child) in excess of 3x contribution limits for an individual, outlined in E.L. 14-114;

•Meet threshold requirements for number of matchable contributions received and total monetary contributions received (see Threshold Requirements for Participation); and

•Adhere to all program requirements (disclosure, contribution limits, etc.)

Contributions between $5 and $250 may be eligible to receive matching funds and the program is overseen by the newly enacted Public Campaign Finance Board. Not all contributions are eligible for the price match.

Match Formula



$100 contribution gets $600 public matching funds for a total of $700 

Maximum Match

$250 contribution gets $1,500 public matching funds for a maximum of $1,750
State Legislative Offices

Match Formula

$12-to-$1 for first $50
$9-to-$1 for next $100
$8-to-$1 for next $100


$100 contribution gets $1,050 public matching funds ($600 for first $50 + $450 for next $50) for a total of $1,150 

Maximum Match

$250 contribution gets $2,300 public matching funds for a maximum of $2,550


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