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Expanding Residents' Voices in Oakland Electoral Campaigns


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Project Summary

In 2017-18, the Public Ethics Commission is reviewing how the City could redesign its campaign finance laws to expand community participation and equity in the campaign process and reduce the influence of big money in politics. The Commission’s Campaign Finance subcommittee of three Commissioners – Jonathan Stein, Lisa Crowfoot, and James Jackson – are joining with community partners to consider how the Commission might create a better system of campaign finance laws and activities that allow every Oakland voice – regardless of racial, economic, or political status – to be heard and valued as part of the candidate campaign process.

Share your perspective on Oakland’s campaign process by taking this survey!


  • October-December 2017 – Campaign Finance Subcommittee meeting, Identify Partners, Develop project plan
  • January-May 2018 – Goldman School Student to conduct research, outreach, and interviews to analyze user feedback and develop policy recommendations
  • May-June – Create and distribute survey for individual Oaklander input
  • June – Campaign Finance Subcommittee meeting to review Goldman Student report, initial survey responses
  • July-August – Draft Subcommittee (potential PEC) recommendations, vet recommendations with partners and community
  • September/October 2018 – Commission review/potential adoption of recommendations and drafting of legislation

Campaign Finance Subcommittee Meetings




Monday, June 11, 2018

5:00 p.m.


City Hall

11th Floor Conference Room

Review report on political engagement in Oakland, discuss preliminary survey results, plan next steps.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

4:00 p.m.

Agenda (PEC Retreat)

City Hall

Hearing Room 4

Discuss background information and general goals for campaign finance and public financing program revisions (PEC Retreat)

Lawrence Lessig video (TED talk)

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

6:00 p.m.


City Hall

11th Floor Conference Room

Review current system, brainstorm policy ideas, and discuss project scope and plans

Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017

4:00 p.m.


City Hall

Hearing Room 4

Review campaign/election data and outcomes stemming from existing system, identify partners, plan next steps to gather input from wide variety of organizations with emphasis on underrepresented communities.

Get Involved

Add your voice by taking our survey!

Email with "subscribe campaign finance" in the subject line to receive news and updates for this project.

Additional Resources

Enhancing Political Engagement in Oakland - a report by Dyana Mardon, Master's candidate, Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley

Read a brief primer on the issues by Commission Chair Jonathan Stein