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NY gets first look at campaign finance reform

ALBANY — Democrats in control of New York’s Assembly have proposed distributing money from Wall Street fraud penalties to political candidates who volunteer to accept public financing of their campaigns.

The bill released Tuesday by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Assemblyman Michael Cusick aims to curtail the influence of big donors and corporations in campaigns, while reducing politicians’ need to constantly seek donations.

The measure would provide $6 for every $1 in contributions a politician collects. There would also be spending limits.

Campaign finance is expected to be a major issue during the remainder of the legislative session.

The Senate’s Republican majority will consider new proposals and Gov. Andrew Cuomo is also working on a bill.

Good-government groups say a few donors can greatly influence policy and spending.