We write to share our analysis of the tiered in-district-only matching plan you have proposed for legislative offices and to recommend improvements. Generally, we support a policy that enhances the importance of community-based donors. We previously recommended to you a legislative matching plan of 8:1 in-district and 6:1 out-of-district. No matter the design, it is important that your ultimate plan provide matching funds in a way that will allow quality candidates in all districts to rely on small donations to run competitive campaigns.
We find that, under your proposed in-district-only matching plan, candidates in lower-income districts would have more difficulty raising competitive sums than under a 6:1 statewide match. This is because there are fewer available donors in lower-income districts, and they tend to give less money.