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How Do Candidates Qualify?

In order to qualify for the program, candidates must:

1.  Show grass roots support in the community:  

  • Candidates for Mayor must collect a signature and a minimal dollar contribution from a set number of eligible voters. For example, $10 from at least 600 eligible voters.  
  • Candidates for City Attorney and City Council must collect a signature and a minimal dollar contribution from a smaller number of eligible voters. For example, $10 from at least 200 eligible voters. For City Council candidates, at least 100 of these qualified contributions must be from individuals residing in the district sought to be represented by the candidate. 

2. Agree to new voluntary campaign contribution limits for individuals.  

  • $500 for mayor during an election cycle, excluding the value of Democracy Dollars. 
  • $250 for City Attorney or City Council.  

3. Agree to participate in televised and live-streamed debates that are recorded and remain accessible to voters to view at their convenience.  
4. Reaffirm their legal obligation to not solicit money for or on behalf of any political action committee, political party, or any organization that will make an independent expenditure for or against any City of San Diego candidate within the cycle.     

Frequently Asked Questions

 The Democracy Dollars Program is unique in that the “public” funds go directly to voters. Candidates have to engage voters to get voters to assign the Democracy Dollars to them, to secure the public funding. Other public funding programs give funds directly to candidate campaigns... 

Find out more