What Are Democracy Dollars?

The Democracy Dollars Program offers a new way for Oakland residents to participate in local government by supporting campaigns and/or running for office themselves. Democracy Dollars are certificates that Oakland residents can give to participating candidates to help support their campaigns.

Date Posted: April 10th, 2023 @ 2:30 PM
Last Updated: April 10th, 2023 @ 3:56 PM

When is the next City of Oakland election?

The next City of Oakland election is November 5, 2024.

Which positions are eligible for Democracy Dollars funding in 2024?

In 2024, the ten city seats will be on the ballot:

  • City Attorney
  • City Council At-Large
  • City Council DIstrict 1
  • City Council District 3
  • City Council District 5
  • City Council District 7
  • School Board District 1
  • School Board District 3
  • School Board District 5
  • School Board District 7

A list of participating candidates will be available in early 2024.

Can I contribute my Democracy Dollars towards a ballot initiative, referendum, or recall campaign?

No, Democracy Dollars can only be. donated to participating candidates running for City of Oakland office

Who can use Democracy Dollars?

In order to use Democracy Dollars, you must be:

  • An Oakland resident,
  • At least 18 years of age, and
  • A U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or lawful permanent resident ("green card holder")

You do not have to be a registered voter to use Democracy Dollars. If you meet the criteria, you may apply for Democracy Dollars.

How do I get my Democracy Dollars?

If you are a registered voter, you will automatically receive your Democracy Dollars by mail.

If you are not a registered voter, you may be eligible apply to receive Democracy Dollars by downloading the application.

Can I give my Democracy Voucher to any candidate?

Your Democracy Dollars can be given to any participating candidate. A list of participating candidates will be posted on the Program website.

Can I give all my Democracy Dollars to one candidate?

You can choose to give all your Dollars to one candidate or split your Dollars to multiple candidates. You may choose to use a few Dollars now and a few later. But don't wait too long because candidates can only accept a limited number of Dollars.

How do I return my Democracy Dollars?

Democracy Dollars may be returned directly to a candidate's campaign, to the Oakland Public Ethics Commission, or dropped-off at one of the many designated locations. Learn about all the options for returning your Democracy Dollars.

Dollars must have your signature and the candidate's name clearly written to be processed.

When should I use my Democracy Dollars?

Your Dollars are good from the time you receive them through November 30, 2024. You can use your Dollars all at once or over the course of the year.