'Game-changer': NY Senate OKs use of campaign funds for child care

May 22, 2019

Originally published in Auburn Pub on May 22, 2019.

A bill approved Wednesday by the state Senate would ensure candidates for state and local offices in New York could use campaign funds to cover child care expenses.

The legislation sponsored by state Sen. Shelley Mayer passed by a 60-0 vote. It would allow campaign funds to be used for child care costs if the expenses are "incurred as a direct result of campaign activity."

We need more young people, young mothers and fathers, running for public office," Mayer said in a statement. "We need their voices and experiences represented in local and state government. Child care costs are already too burdensome for many households, and these costs should not prohibit qualified candidates from running for public office."

Mayer introduced the bill last year after Liuba Grechen Shirley, a Democrat who challenged U.S. Peter King in New York's 2nd Congressional District, asked the Federal Election Commission whether she could use campaign funds to pay for child care.