Bill S2543-2013

Provides additional opportunity for new registrant by mail to indicate choice of party enrollment where original choice omitted

Provides additional opportunity for new registrant by mail to indicate choice of party enrollment where original choice was omitted or void, by requiring board of elections to notify registrant of ineffective enrollment and ineligibility to vote in a party primary and providing a place for the registrant to enroll or decline to enroll in a party by mail.

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  • Jan 8, 2014: REFERRED TO ELECTIONS
  • Jan 18, 2013: REFERRED TO ELECTIONS

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S2543

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the election law, in relation to failure of new registrants to enroll

PURPOSE: The bill authorizes voters whose applications are timely mailed and received to vote in the next following primary, general or special election.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Section 1: Amends Election Law subdivision 3 of section 5-210, as amended by chapter 179 of the laws of 2005, to provide that an application postmarked by no later than fifteen days before the next primary, general or special election, which is received no later than ten days before such election, or which is delivered in person at least 10 days before such election to the county board of elections, shall entitle such applicant to vote at such election.

Section 3: Provides for the Act to take effect immediately.

Under current law, an application postmarked by twenty-five days before the next primary, general or special election, which is received at least 20 days before such election, or delivered in person to the county board of elections at least 10 days before a special election entitles the applicant to vote in that special election. It fails to address the right of the applicant to vote in primary and general elections in the same circumstances, which appears to be a technical error.

JUSTIFICATION: Article II, Section 5 of the New York State Constitution requires that in order to vote in an election a voter's registration must be completed at least ten days before such election. This bill reduces the time period prior to an election during which a person can register to vote and be entitled to vote to the constitutional ten day minimum, and clarifies that when a registration is received at least ten days before a primary, general or special election, the voter is entitled to vote in that election.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2009-2010: S.3996 - Passed Elections; Committed to Rules, Referred back to Elections 2010-2011: S. 1558 - Referred to Elections

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it has become a law.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2543 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 18, 2013 ___________
Introduced by Sen. ADDABBO -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Elections AN ACT to amend the election law, in relation to failure of new regis- trants to enroll THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision 9 of section 5-210 of the election law, as amended by chapter 179 of the laws of 2005, is amended to read as follows: 9. The county board of elections shall, promptly and in any event, not later than twenty-one days after receipt by it of the application, veri- fy the identity of the applicant. In order to do so, the county board of elections shall utilize the information provided in the application and shall attempt to verify such information with the information provided by the department of motor vehicles, social security administration and any other lawful available information source. If the county board of elections is unable to verify the identity of the applicant within twen- ty-one days of the receipt of the application, it shall immediately take steps to confirm that the information provided by the applicant was accurately utilized by such county board of elections, was accurately verified with other information sources and that no data entry error, or other similar type of error, occurred. Following completion of the preceding steps, the county board of elections shall mail (a) a notice of its approval, (b) a notice of its approval which includes an indi- cation that such board has not yet been able to verify the identity of the applicant and a request for more information so that such verifica- tion may be completed, or (c) a notice of its rejection of the applica- tion to the applicant in a form approved by the state board of elections. Notices of approval, notices of approval with requests for more information or notices of rejection shall be sent by nonforwardable first class [or] return postage guaranteed mail on which is endorsed
"ADDRESS CORRECTION REQUESTED" and which contains a request that any such mail received for persons not residing at the address be dropped back in the mail. The voter's registration and enrollment shall be complete upon receipt of the application by the appropriate county board of elections. The failure of a county board of elections to verify an applicant's identity shall not be the basis for the rejection of a voter's application, provided, however, that such verification failure shall be the basis for requiring county board of elections to take the additional verification steps provided by this chapter. The notice shall also advise the registrant of the date when his registration and enroll- ment is effective, of the date and the hours of the next regularly sche- duled primary or general election in which he will be eligible to vote, of the location of the polling place of the election district in which he is or will be a qualified voter, whether such polling place is acces- sible to physically handicapped voters, an indication that physically handicapped voters or voters who are ill or voters who will be out of the city or county on the day of the primary or general election, may obtain an absentee ballot and the phone number to call for absentee ballot applications, the phone numbers to call for location of polling places, to obtain registration forms and the phone number to call to indicate that the voter is willing to serve on election day as an inspector, poll clerk or interpreter. The notice of approval, notice of approval with request for more information or notice of rejection shall also advise the applicant to notify the board of elections if there is any inaccuracy. SUCH NOTICE SHALL INCLUDE A STATEMENT OF THE PARTY ENROLLMENT OF THE REGISTRANT, OR, IF NO PARTY WAS SELECTED BY THE REGIS- TRANT, A STATEMENT THAT THE REGISTRANT DID NOT ENROLL IN A PARTY AND IS NOT ELIGIBLE TO VOTE IN A PARTY PRIMARY ELECTION, AND, INSTRUCTIONS ON HOW TO ENROLL IN A PARTY. The form of such mail notification shall be prescribed by the state board of elections and shall contain such other information and instructions as it may reasonably require to carry out the purposes of this section. The request for more information shall inform the voter that "THE FAILURE TO CONTACT THE BOARD OF ELECTIONS AND CORRECT ANY INACCURACIES IN THE APPLICATION OR PROVIDE REQUESTED ADDI- TIONAL INFORMATION MAY RESULT IN A REQUEST FOR IDENTIFICATION AT THE POLLS IN ORDER TO CAST A VOTE ON A VOTING MACHINE." If such notice is returned undelivered without a new address, the board shall forthwith send such applicant a confirmation notice pursuant to the provisions of section 5-712 of this article and place such applicant in inactive status. The state board of elections shall prepare uniform notices by this section as provided for in subdivision eight of section 3-102 of this chapter. S 2. Subdivision 3 of section 5-302 of the election law, as amended by chapter 659 of the laws of 1994, is amended to read as follows: 3. If marks are found in more than one of the boxes or circles or if no marks are found in any of the boxes or circles of any application form, the voter who used the application form shall be deemed not to be enrolled, and the words blank or void shall be entered in the space reserved on his registration poll record for the name of a political party or in the computer files from which the computer generated regis- tration lists are prepared. However if such application form sets forth the address of prior registration and such prior registration had not been previously cancelled, the party enrollment, if any, which is part of such prior registration shall be entered in such space on such regis- tration poll record or in such computer files. IF A NEW APPLICATION FORM DOES NOT CONTAIN A MARK FOR A PARTY ENROLLMENT, BUT, NO LATER THAN
THIRTY DAYS AFTER THE REGISTRANT WAS SENT NOTICE OF THE LACK OF PARTY ENROLLMENT AS REQUIRED BY SUBDIVISION NINE OF SECTION 5-210 OF THIS TITLE AND AT LEAST TWENTY-FIVE DAYS BEFORE A PRIMARY ELECTION, THE REGISTRANT MAKES A PARTY ENROLLMENT CHOICE ON THE CARD PROVIDED WITH THE NOTICE, SIGNS THE AFFIRMATION CONTAINED THEREIN AND MAILS IT TO THE BOARD OF ELECTIONS, THEN THE REGISTRANT'S PARTY ENROLLMENT SHALL NOT BE DEEMED TO BE A CHANGE OF ENROLLMENT AND SHALL BE EFFECTIVE ON THE DATE IT IS RECEIVED BY THE COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS. A PARTY ENROLLMENT MAILED MORE THAN THIRTY DAYS AFTER MAILING OF THE NOTICE OF THE LACK OF ENROLLMENT SHALL BE DEEMED TO BE A CHANGE OF ENROLLMENT. S 3. This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall have become a law.

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