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Limits & Thresholds

2023 City Council Elections

CONTRIBUTION LIMITS
SPENDING LIMITS
THRESHOLDS
Public Funds Payment

Contribution limits apply to all campaigns, whether or not you join the matching funds program. Both monetary and in-kind contributions of goods and services are subject to these limits. All candidates are prohibited from accepting contributions from corporations, LLCs, and partnerships. Candidates are prohibited from accepting contributions from political committees not registered with the CFB for the current election cycle. You can view the list of registered political committee for the 2025 election cycle (which also covers this 2023 election cycle) here.

The Campaign Finance Act requires that contribution and expenditure limits be adjusted every four years based on changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The new limits are reflected below and are applicable for the entire election cycle.

Office

Participant

Non-Participant

City Council

$1,050

$1,600

If an individual contributor has business dealings with the city at the time their contribution is made, lower limits apply, whether the candidate is a participant or non-participant. Doing business contributions are not eligible for matching funds and do not count toward the threshold to receive public funds.

Office

Doing Business Contribution Limit

City Council

$250

Access the Doing Business Database

Program participants must observe strict spending limits. A spending limit is the maximum total amount a campaign can spend during different periods of an election cycle. The amounts vary depending on which office you seek. Non-participants are not subject to a spending limit.

The Campaign Finance Act requires that contribution and expenditure limits be adjusted every four years based on changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The new limits are reflected below and will be applicable for the entire election cycle.

Office

Out-Year *
(years prior to election year)

Primary Election †

General Election

City Council

$55,000

$207,000

$207,000

 *Spending in excess of these amounts will be charged against the first limit applicable.
If no primary is held, there is no primary election spending limit.

If a non-participant raises or spends more than half the applicable spending limit, the spending limit for all participants in that race will be increased by 50%. If a non-participant raises or spends more than three times the applicable spending limit, participants in that race will no longer be subject to a spending limit. The CFB will review disclosure statements to see if expenditure limit relief is warranted and will notify affected campaigns. Candidates may also petition the Board if they believe that a non-participating opponent has triggered expenditure limit relief. Candidates should never assume that their expenditure limit has been increased or suspended unless they receive written confirmation from the CFB.

Program participants must meet this two-part fundraising threshold, abide by Program requirements, and face opposition on the ballot to qualify for public funding. Only the first $175 of an individual New York City resident’s contribution is applied toward meeting the dollar amount threshold.

Office

Minimum Funds Raised

Minimum Number of Contributors

City Council

$5,000

75*

* Must be district residents

Public Funds Matching Rate

The Program matches each dollar a New York City resident gives, up to $175, with eight dollars in public funds, for a maximum of $2,000 in public funds per contributor.

Matching Rate
Office Matching Rate Maximum Matchable Per Contributor Maximum Public Funds Per Contributor
City Council $8-to-$1 $175 $1,400

Maximum Public Funds Payment

The Campaign Finance Act requires that contribution and expenditure limits be adjusted every four years based on changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The public funds maximums and caps are based on the expenditure limit, so they are also adjusted. These new maximums are reflected below.

Maximum Public Funds Payments*
Office Primary Election General Election
City Council $184,000 $184,000

*89% of applicable spending limit.

Timing of Payments

The first public funds payments begin as early as December 2022 for this two-year election cycle.

For more information on public funds eligibility criteria, please see Chapter 6 of the Handbook. For more information on the Program and how to join, see Join the Matching Funds Program.

2023 Elections Public Funds Payment Schedule

Payment Date Based on Valid Matching Claims Reported in Disclosure Statement(s) Through: Payment Type
December 15, 2022 Disclosure Statement #1 (due July 15, 2022) Pre-Ballot
January 17, 2023 Response to statement review(s) with corrected invalid matching claims Pre-Ballot
February 15, 2023 Disclosure Statement #2 (due January 17, 2023) Pre-Ballot
March 15, 2023 Response to statement review(s) with corrected invalid matching claims Pre-Ballot
April 17, 2023 Disclosure Statement #3 (due March 15, 2023) Pre-Ballot
May 15, 2023 (TBD) Response to statement review(s) with corrected invalid matching claims Primary Election
June 2, 2023 Disclosure Statement #4 (due May 26, 2023) Primary Election
June 23, 2023 Disclosure Statement #5 (due June 16, 2023) Primary Election
July 17, 2023 Response to statement review(s) with corrected invalid matching claims General Election
August 10, 2023 (TBD) Disclosure Statement #6 (due July 17, 2023) General Election
August 31, 2023 (TBD) Disclosure Statement #7 (TBD) General Election
October 13, 2023 Disclosure Statement #8 (due October 6, 2023) General Election
November 2, 2023 Disclosure Statement #9 (due October 27, 2023) General Election

Note: Dates and deadlines are subject to change due to changes in the law, election schedules, Board Rules, or other circumstances. If changes do occur, updates will be posted on the CFB website and communicated to registered candidates via the CFB Portal and/or email. Be sure to check this page and the message center in the CFB Portal for updates.

Ineligibility for Public Funds

A campaign may be ineligible to receive public funds if: 1) there is a difference between the financial activity reported by the campaign and the financial activity documented by the campaign (a “reporting variance”), 2) the campaign fails to report employment information for a portion of its matching claims, or 3) the campaign fails to provide complete and accurate backup documentation for a portion of its matching claims. See Board Rule 3-01(d) (which also lists the other factors that may lead to a determination of ineligibility). The threshold percentages for reporting variances, missing employment information, and backup documentation error rate are published for each election cycle on or before July 11 in the year before the year of the election. Campaigns that exceed any of those percentages may be ineligible to receive public funds until they correct their reporting or submit additional documentation.