[RFC] Uniswap Delegate Gas Rebates

Author: Bobbay @ UMA
Stage: RFC
Date: 21-02-2024

Simple Summary

This proposal introduces gas rebates for delegates’ onchain voting costs based on their participation metrics to retain current delegates as well as lower the entry barrier to participate in Uniswap DAO to cultivate a more decentralized environment.

We propose a total budget of $50K in ETH to reimburse active Uniswap Delegates.


This proposal aims to reimburse Uniswap delegates’ onchain voting gas costs based on delegates meeting a set participation threshold. Using UMAs Optimistic Oracle, active Uniswap Delegates can enjoy automatic gas rebates paid out to delegates every quarter without any manual effort or additional admin costs to the DAO.


The two recent proposals(Delegation of UNI to active but underrepresented Delegates [Passed] & Lower onchain Proposal Threshold [Passed] aimed to increase the decentralization of Uniswap DAO by enabling more participants and enabling more of them to take action. This proposal builds on top of those to create a more decentralized environment where Uniswap DAO retains current active delegates and attracts new delegates to actively participate in Uniswap DAO.


  1. Background

  2. Current Expenditure

  3. Other Reimbursement Programs

  4. Reimbursement eligibility

  5. How it works?

  6. Dispute Process

  7. Reporting

  8. Other


A key part of a DAO is enabling a stakeholder to voice their opinion, no matter how small or large their voting power is. However, the gas of onchain voting can deter long-term participation due to the unsustainable practice of having to front the cost yourself.

Delegate compensation is still a rarity in the space and so are gas rebates. It costs to voice your opinion. This isn’t a sustainable practice if DAOs want to retain and attract new delegates, especially if they want to increase the diversity of the voters. This proposal aims to encourage the long-term participation of active UNI holders.

Current Expenditure

Examining the data in the table below, it’s clear that gas consumption is elevated, resulting in a substantial financial burden for participants in the DAO. It is imperative to cultivate an environment conducive to the retention of proficient and engaged delegates within the Uniswap DAO.

Source: Onchain vs Offchain voting

Uniswap delegates have spent over $150,000 on onchain voting. With 37 proposals, this comes to an average of $4,071 spent per proposal. Furthermore, looking at the participation ratio of the proposal to voters, Uniswap has an average of 463 voters; leading to an average cost of $8.86 per onchain vote. If a voter participated in all of Uniswap DAO votes, this would have totaled $327.82.

Besides companies or independents who can afford these expenses, this can prevent those with lower capital from participating in Uniswap DAO.

Notably, the gas costs for two of these proposals escalated to over $14,000.

To cultivate an environment in which delegates can engage continuously and viably in the Uniswap DAO, it is ideal for the DAO to establish a gas rebate program. This initiative aims to safeguard its members’ long-term sustainability and active participation.

Other Reimbursement Programs


Aave Governance V2 incurred an expenditure of 87.96 ETH, equivalent to $167,131, attributed to a higher volume of proposals and comparatively lower voter participation. To mitigate these gas costs, Aave DAO implemented a reimbursement policy for its delegates contingent on their onchain voting activities, provided they meet or exceed the 80% voting participation threshold. Aave launched their Governance V3 in December 2023 which further mitigates the gas cost of voting by moving governance votes to cheaper L2s and sponsoring the gas costs.

May 2023 & August 2023 reimbursement
Dune Table to identify eligible delegates for reimbursement

Reimbursement Eligibility

We encourage the community to give their specific feedback about the requirements to be eligible for reimbursement.

A potential criterion for delegate gas rebate eligibility could be a UNI voter holding a minimum amount of UNI voting power, coupled with maintaining a minimum of 75% voting participation.

Other ideas could include:

  • All delegates are reimbursed for their voting participation
  • Only recognized delegates are eligible for reimbursement

How it works?

Integration Steps

  1. UMA Team: create a new Safe with OptimisticGovernor module and rules defining criteria of the gas rebates program (eligibility of addresses, frequency, etc). This module would allow anyone to propose transaction batches that meet the rules. Proposals that are verified to meet the rules by the optimistic oracle can be executed.
  2. UMA Team: transfer Safe ownership to a Uniswap designated multi-sig. The multi-sig is only intended to act as a fallback or method to transfer funds if the program is shut down.
  3. Uniswap DAO: fund Safe with $50,000 worth of ETH.

Due to the Treasury containing mainly UNI, we will transfer UNI to the multisig and complete a swap of UNI to ETH to fund this program.

As mentioned, a new multisig will be setup for this program. The $50,000 will only be used to refund Uniswap delegates. There are no other costs associated with this program as it will run automatically via UMA’s Optimistic Oracle.

It’s hard to anticipate how long this $50K ETH will last for reimbursements since it depends on various factors; the number of onchain proposals, number of eligible delegates, rising gas costs etc.

Gas Rebate Execution

  1. UMA bot (or anyone else) proposes gas rebate transactions quarterly. These transactions are proposed to the optimistic oracle contract.
  • Initiating a transaction requires the proposer (UMA bot) to post a bond of 2 WETH for a 1-day challenge period.
  • Oracle participants review the proposed transactions using the public script.
  • If not disputed, gas rebate transactions can be executed via UMA Bot (or anyone else) who covers the gas costs
  • If disputed, the proposal is escalated to UMA’s DVM which facilitates the dispute resolution between the proposer and disputer. UMA only determines the bond settlement between the proposer and disputer, not if the proposed transactions should be executed by the Safe.
  1. Uniswap DAO tops up Safe balance as needed

UMA has already built bots that automatically propose transactions and we recommend utilizing these bots in the program for ease of use and to ensure prompt rebates.

UMA will develop a gas rebate script depending on Uniswap DAO requirements to reimburse delegates. We will also develop a dune table so the Uniswap community, delegates, optimistic oracle proposers, and disputers to easily verify gas rebate transactions.

Dispute process

  • Anyone can dispute by navigating to https://oracle.uma.xyz/ and finding the Uniswap gas rebate proposal to initiate a dispute by posting a bond.
  • UMA token holders vote to resolve the dispute, with the correct party rewarded from the opposing party’s bond. This bonding and dispute mechanism punishes incorrect proposers and disputers and incentivizes honest disputes.
  • Any proposal that was incorrectly disputed can be re-proposed to the oracle for execution without requiring revoting. It is important to note, the dispute resolution decided by UMA token holder votes are not deciding if the transactions can be executed or not, only the bond allocation between the proposer and disputer.


UMA will provide a quarterly report on the Uniswap forum to provide transparency into processes such as the amount of funds disbursed, the number of eligible addresses, etc.


The OptimisticGovernor contract has been audited by Open Zeppelin and has over $1B of TVS through UMA’s OO. The module will only be connected to the newly made gas rebate Safe. This limits any unlikely security issues to only the funds within that Safe.

The proposed optimistic workflow is better suited to ongoing gas rebates than the current Uniswap governance process. The optimistic workflow allows for ongoing rebates without a governance vote each time, it is better at verifying transaction data than governance voters, and it can go from proposal to execution in 24 hours compared to the typical 23 days for a governance proposal under the current process, as seen below.

Next Steps

  1. Incorporate community feedback
  2. Present a forum poll to identify the eligibility requirements & identify relevant multisig signers
  3. Move to a snapshot vote

Thanks for the proposal Bobby. Just curious, are bots themselves gas efficient? I saw there are many steps and wonder whether that itself also cost a lot of gas to execute

Hello @Bobbay! Dennison @ Tally.xyz here!

This is interesting, We’ve looked into the gas costs for Uniswap governance quite a bit and you’re right, it’ being an L1 based DAO means participation does cost money.

Dune Dashboard

A look at the daily cost for voting in Uniswap (Org Total)

Fortunately, the cost has gone down significantly with the rise of scalability, and are a far cry from what they were at the peak. The past two quarters have seen an average vote cost on the order of $1, rising up to a high recently of $5.95 (not cheap for sure).

Gasless Transactions are built into Governor

The Governor contract used by Uniswap has built in support for gasless participation, meaning delegates already can and do participate to vote onchain without spending any gas!

Uniswap currently has several options for gasless participation:

The foundation supports the Uni funded project Uni.vote that allows users to vote by signature.

There is a free public api built and mainained by the Uni.Vote team that allows anyone to build gasless voting directly into their tool as well.

Tally currently offers gasless delegation to encourage delegate participation and gasless voting is also available, although currently not used.

Both of these tools use different eligibility criteria designed to prevent abuse of the system while supporting the most active and valuable delegates.

Additionally, while participation in Uni Governance does indeed cost money for those who choose not to use the existing rebate systems, when considered against the history of Uniswap, the cost of governance does not seem very high. Uniswap is one of the oldest onchain DAOs and at only ~$111k for the total cost for voting, it seems somewhat reasonable.

I definitely agree that it would be useful to assist delegates in their participation, but it’s important to note that the Governor contracts already allow for gasless voting for delegates.

If the DAO is really motivated on this point, it might be worthwhile incorporating the Nouns framework which refunds gas at point of vote directly onchain.

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I do agree that gasless voting and delegation seems like the better option.

I’ve tried out uni.vote once, at the current state it is usable, but would need some improvements for smoother and more secure UX. (In particular, it would be important that anyone can trigger the submission of the vote batch, rather that having to rely on some third-party actor to do that before the deadline.) Further work on in these tools, and lowering the minimum UNI thresholds for them, could be good investment options.

I echo the sentiment around gasless voting and believe Uni.vote is a great option with some further improvements Hopefully, the DAO can get those improvements handled and the tool can made more accessible for those to use since I am not actually sure how many delegates or voters actually use it. Is anyone aware of how many people have used it in recent times?

On another note, we are big fans of gasless voting, and it’s a big reason why we built oSnap. No gas costs and onchain execution for those DAOs that don’t want their community members to pay gas costs to voice their opinion!

Any cost for the voters is not good IMO. If DAOs want sustainable and active participation from their community, its on them to reduce those capital barriers that enable their community members to voice their opinions. Not everyone can afford gas costs for the long term, especially those who aren’t sponsored or are working under a company.

On another note, we are talking with StableLab to see whether we can combine parts of this proposal with the Uniswap Delegate Reward to make a more efficient program. We will potentially use OO in their program, but will leave gas rebates aspect for now, in hopes that Uni.vote will get the necessary improvements and be made more accessible to delegates!

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