May 7, 2013

Defunding Clean Elections May Go to Voters

State Senate OKs bill that would move money to public schools

The Arizona Senate has resurrected an effort to divert all public campaign finance dollars toward public schools.

The Senate advanced the bill Tuesday. It was the first time HCR2026 saw action since March.

The bill would allow voters to decide whether the state should use public campaign finance dollars to instead fund public education.

The GOP-led House passed the bill in March in a 31-27 vote.

Voters created Arizona's Citizens Clean Elections Commission in 1998. It uses surcharges on criminal fines and civil penalties to fund candidates for state office. Participants qualify for public funding by gathering $5 contributions from eligible voters and agreeing to comply with spending and contribution limits.

Clean Elections opponents say the money would be better spent on public schools.

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