73-b. Advertisements by elected government officials and candidates made with public funds; prohibited. 1. As used in this section:
(a) "Political subdivision" shall mean a county, city, town, village or district within the state.
(b) "Public authority" shall mean a public authority or public benefit corporation created by or existing under any law of the state, at least one of whose members is appointed by the governor (including any subsidiaries of such public authority or public benefit corporation), other than an interstate or international authority or public benefit corporation.
(c) "Appear" or "appears" shall mean to appear by likeness, picture or voice.
(d) "Candidate" shall have the meaning set forth in section 14-100 of the election law.
2. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, (a) no elected government official or candidate for elected local, state or federal office shall knowingly appear in any advertisement or promotion, including public or community service announcements, published or broadcast through any print or electronic media (including television, radio and internet) by any private or commercial entity or any other entity that publishes such advertisement for a fee, if the advertisement or promotion is paid for or produced in whole or in part with funds of the state, a political subdivision thereof or a public authority.
(b) No person shall knowingly use the funds of the state, a political subdivision thereof or public authority to pay for or produce, in whole or in part, any advertisement or promotion that is prohibited by paragraph (a) of this subdivision. This prohibition shall not apply to otherwise lawful expenditures of public campaign funds specifically provided for under state, federal or local law.
3. Any person who violates the provisions of this section shall be liable for a civil penalty of not less than one thousand dollars nor more than five thousand dollars. The penalties prescribed by this subdivision may be recovered in a civil action brought by the attorney general.
Last modified: February 3, 2019