Bill S6519-2013

Relates to amending deadlines to facilitate timely transmission of ballots to overseas military voters for primary and general elections

Amends deadlines to facilitate timely transmission of ballots to overseas military voters for primary and general elections.

Details

Actions

  • Jun 20, 2014: COMMITTED TO RULES
  • Feb 26, 2014: ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • Feb 11, 2014: 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • Feb 10, 2014: 1ST REPORT CAL.156
  • Jan 31, 2014: REFERRED TO ELECTIONS

Meetings

Calendars

Votes

VOTE: COMMITTEE VOTE: - Elections - Feb 10, 2014
Ayes (5): O'Mara, Ball, Gallivan, Marchione, Nozzolio
Ayes W/R (4): Savino, Tkaczyk, Dilan, Krueger

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S6519

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the election law, in relation to amending certain deadlines to facilitate the timely transmission of ballots to military voters stationed overseas; and to amend the public officers law, in relation to filling vacancies in elective offices

Purpose:

Provides for changes in the election law to allow for compliance with the federal Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE) Act.

Summary of Provisions:

Various sections of the election law are changed to provide adequate time for the sending of ballots to military and overseas voters. These provisions include the following:

Moves the primary election for federal, state, and local offices to the third Tuesday in August;

Moves the certification of local ballot proposals to three months before the election;

Provides for the certification of candidates for the ballot at least fifty-four days before the election, in the case of the state board of elections, and at least fifty-three days before the election, in the case of local boards of elections;

Requires voter check cards be sent to voters between forty and fortyfive days before the election to notify them of their poll site and hours of voting;

Requires candidates for county committee who have been designated for more than one election district notify the board of election in which district they wish to run at least ten weeks before the primary;

Moves the filing of designating petitions to between the thirteenth Friday and the twelfth Wednesday preceding the primary election;

Moves the filing of opportunity to ballot petitions to between the eleventh Wednesday and the tenth Wednesday before the primary election; Provides that judicial conventions be held between the fourth Tuesday and the fourth Thursday in August;

Moves the filing of petitions for independent petitions to no earlier than fourteen weeks and no later than thirteen weeks before the general election;

Requires certificates of acceptance or declination for independent petitions be filed no later than the third day after the thirteenth Tuesday before the general election;

Provides that the certificate to fill a vacancy in an independent nomination be filed no later than six days after the thirteenth Tuesday before the general election;

Requires a vacancy occur at least three months before the general election to be filled at that election;

Requires military and overseas voters ballots be sent at least fortyfive days before the primary and general elections.

Justification:

The enactment of the federal Military Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE) Act requires that ballots for military and overseas voters be sent at least forty-five days prior to an election to ensure their receipt in time for the voter to vote and return their ballot to be counted.

A U.S. District Court ordered that the primary election for federal office in New York be moved to the fourth Tuesday in June. The court explicitly stated in the order that this date could be changed by the state if they adopted a date that complies with the MOVE Act. A June primary for state offices would be disruptive to the normal legislative cycle, negatively impact the budget and end-of-session matters, and unnecessarily inject politics into the governing process.

This bill provides a solution to the current law which requires conducting two primary elections in New York, one for federal office and a second one for state and local offices. It is beneficial to the voters and the taxpayers of New York to combine these two primaries into one. The cost of conducting a statewide primary in New York has been estimated to cost over $40 million. By combining the primaries the state taxpayers save the cost of one of the primaries. In addition the voters only have to make time to go to the polls for one primary and one general election.

Protecting the rights of the military and overseas voters is the goal of this legislation. Giving them adequate time to receive and vote their ballots should be the goal of every New Yorker.

Fiscal Implications:

Save counties upwards of $40 million.

Effective Date:

Immediately


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 6519 IN SENATE January 31, 2014 ___________
Introduced by Sen. O'MARA -- 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 amending certain dead- lines to facilitate the timely transmission of ballots to military voters stationed overseas; and to amend the public officers law, in relation to filling vacancies in elective offices THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Paragraph b of subdivision 1 of section 4-108 of the election law, as amended by chapter 117 of the laws of 1985, is amended to read as follows: b. Whenever any proposal, proposition or referendum as provided by law is to be submitted to a vote of the people of a county, city, town, village or special district, at an election conducted by the board of elections, the clerk of such political subdivision, at least [thirty-six days] THREE MONTHS prior to the election at which such proposal, propo- sition or referendum is to be submitted, shall transmit to each board of elections a certified copy of the text of such proposal, proposition or referendum and a statement of the form in which it is to be submitted. If a special election is to be held, such transmittal shall also give the date of such election. S 2. Section 4-110 of the election law, as amended by chapter 434 of the laws of 1984, is amended to read as follows: S 4-110. Certification of primary election candidates; state board of elections. The state board of elections not later than [thirty-six] FIFTY-FOUR days before a primary election, shall certify to each county board of elections: The name and residence of each candidate to be voted for within the political subdivision of such board for whom a desig- nation has been filed with the state board; the title of the office or position for which the candidate is designated; the name of the party upon whose primary ballot his name is to be placed; and the order in which the names of the candidates are to be printed as determined by the state board. Where an office or position is uncontested, such certif- ication shall state such fact.
S 3. Subdivision 1 of section 4-112 of the election law, as amended by chapter 4 of the laws of 2011, is amended to read as follows: 1. The state board of elections, not later than [thirty-six] FIFTY-FOUR days before a general election, or fifty-three days before a special election, shall certify to each county board of elections the name and residence of each candidate nominated in any valid certificate filed with it or by the returns canvassed by it, the title of the office for which nominated; the name of the party or body specified of which he is a candidate; the emblem chosen to distinguish the candidates of the party or body; and a notation as to whether or not any litigation is pending concerning the candidacy. Upon the completion of any such liti- gation, the state board of elections shall forthwith notify the appro- priate county boards of elections of the results of such litigation. S 4. Section 4-114 of the election law, as amended by chapter 4 of the laws of 2011, is amended to read as follows: S 4-114. Determination of candidates and questions; county board of elections. The county board of elections, not later than the [thirty- fifth] FIFTY-THIRD day before the day of a primary [or], general OR SPECIAL election, [or the fifty-third day before a special election,] shall determine the candidates duly nominated for public office and the questions that shall appear on the ballot within the jurisdiction of that board of elections. S 5. Subdivision 1 of section 4-117 of the election law, as amended by chapter 288 of the laws of 2009, is amended to read as follows: 1. The board of elections, [between August first and August fifth of each year] NOT LESS THAN FORTY DAYS NOR MORE THAN FORTY-FIVE DAYS BEFORE THE PRIMARY ELECTION IN EACH YEAR, shall send by first class 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, a communication, in a form approved by the state board of elections, to every registered voter who has been registered without a change of address since the beginning of such year, except that the board of elections shall not be required to send such communications to voters in inactive status. The communication shall notify the voter of the days and hours of the ensuing primary and gener- al elections, the place where he OR SHE appears by his OR HER registra- tion records to be entitled to vote, the fact that voters who have moved or will have moved from the address where they were last registered must re-register or, that if such move was to another address in the same county or city, that such voter may either notify the board of elections of his OR HER new address or vote by paper ballot at the polling place for his OR HER new address even if such voter has not re-registered, or otherwise notified the board of elections of the change of address. If the location of the polling place for the voter's election district has been moved, the communication shall contain the following legend in bold type: "YOUR POLLING PLACE HAS BEEN CHANGED. YOU NOW VOTE AT..........". The communication shall also indicate whether the polling place is accessible to physically disabled voters, that a voter who will be out of the city or county on the day of the primary or general election or a voter who is ill or physically disabled may obtain an absentee ballot, that a physically disabled voter whose polling place is not accessible may request that his OR HER registration record be moved to an election district which has a polling place which is accessible, the phone number to call for applications to move a registration record or for absentee ballot applications, the phone number to call for the location of regis- tration and polling places, the phone number to call to indicate that
the voter is willing to serve on election day as an election inspector, poll clerk, interpreter or in other capacities, the phone number to call to obtain an application for registration by mail, and such other infor- mation concerning the elections or registration as the board may include. In lieu of sending such communication to every registered voter, the board of elections may send a single communication to a household containing more than one registered voter, provided that the names of all such voters appear as part of the address on such communi- cation. S 6. Subdivision 1 of section 6-108 of the election law, as amended by chapter 160 of the laws of 1996, is amended to read as follows: 1. In any town in a county having a population of over seven hundred fifty thousand inhabitants, as shown by the latest federal decennial or special population census, party nominations of candidates for town offices shall be made at the primary preceding the election. In any other town, nominations of candidates for town offices shall be made by caucus or primary election as the rules of the county committee shall provide, except that the members of the county committee from a town may adopt by a two-thirds vote, a rule providing that the party candidates for town offices shall be nominated at the primary election. If a rule adopted by the county committee of a political party or by the members of the county committee from a town, provides that party candidates for town offices, shall be nominated at a primary election, such rule shall not apply to nor affect a primary held less than four months after a certified copy of the rule shall have been filed with the board of elections. After the filing of such a rule, the rule shall continue in force until a certified copy of a rule revoking the same shall have been filed with such board at least four months before a subsequent primary. Such a caucus shall be held no earlier than the first day on which designating petitions for the [fall] primary election may be signed. S 7. Subdivisions 1 and 2 of section 6-147 of the election law, as amended by chapter 434 of the laws of 1984, are amended to read as follows: 1. The name of a person designated on more than one petition as a candidate for a party position to be filled by two or more persons shall be printed on the ballot with the group of candidates designated by the petition first filed unless such person, in a certificate duly acknowl- edged by him OR HER and filed with the board of elections not later than the [eighth] TENTH Tuesday preceding the primary election or five days after the board of elections mails such person notice of his designation in more than one group, whichever is later, specifies another group in which his OR HER name shall be printed. 2. A person designated as a candidate for the position of member of the county committee in more than one election district shall be deemed to have been designated in the lowest numbered election district unless such person, in a certificate duly acknowledged by him OR HER, and filed with the board of elections not later than the [eighth] TENTH Tuesday preceding the primary election or five days after the board of elections mails such person notice of his OR HER designation in more than one election district whichever is later, specifies that he OR SHE wishes to be deemed designated in a different election district. S 8. Subdivisions 1, 4, 5, 6, 9, 11, 12 and 14 of section 6-158 of the election law, subdivisions 1, 4, 11 and 12 as amended by chapter 434 of the laws of 1984, subdivision 6 as amended by chapter 79 of the laws of 1992, and subdivision 9 as amended by chapter 517 of the laws of 1986, are amended to read as follows:
1. A designating petition shall be filed not earlier than the [tenth Monday] THIRTEENTH FRIDAY before, and not later than the [ninth Thurs- day] TWELFTH WEDNESDAY preceding the primary election. 4. A petition of enrolled members of a party requesting an opportunity to write in the name of an undesignated candidate for a public office or party position at a primary election shall be filed not later than the [eighth Thursday] ELEVENTH WEDNESDAY preceding the primary election. However, where a designating petition has been filed and the person named therein has declined such designation and another person has been designated to fill the vacancy, then in that event, a petition for an opportunity to ballot in a primary election shall be filed not later than the [seventh Thursday] TENTH WEDNESDAY preceding such primary election. 5. A judicial district convention shall be held not earlier than the [Tuesday following the third Monday] FOURTH TUESDAY in [September] AUGUST preceding the general election and not later than the [fourth Monday] FOURTH THURSDAY in [September] AUGUST preceding such election. 6. A certificate of a party nomination made other than at the primary election for an office to be filled at the time of a general election shall be filed not later than seven days after the [fall] primary election, except that a certificate of nomination for an office which becomes vacant after the seventh day preceding such primary election shall be filed not later than fourteen days after the creation of such vacancy and except, further, that a certificate of party nomination of candidates for elector of president and vice-president of the United States shall be filed not later than fourteen days after the [fall] primary election, and except still further that a certificate of party nomination made at a judicial district convention shall be filed not later than the day after the last day to hold such convention and the minutes of such convention, duly certified by the chairman and secre- tary, shall be filed within seventy-two hours after adjournment of the convention. A certificate of party nomination for an office to be filled at a special election shall be filed not later than ten days following the issuance of a proclamation of such election. 9. A petition for an independent nomination for an office to be filled at the time of a general election shall be filed not earlier than [twelve] FOURTEEN weeks and not later than [eleven] THIRTEEN weeks preceding such election. A petition for an independent nomination for an office to be filled at a special election shall be filed not later than twelve days following the issuance of a proclamation of such election. A petition for trustee of the Long Island Power Authority shall be filed not earlier than seven weeks and not later than six weeks preceding the day of the election of such trustees. 11. A certificate of acceptance or declination of an independent nomi- nation for an office to be filled at the time of a general election shall be filed not later than the third day after the [eleventh] THIR- TEENTH Tuesday preceding such election except that a candidate who files such a certificate of acceptance for an office for which there have been filed certificates or petitions designating more than one candidate for the nomination of any party, may thereafter file a certificate of decli- nation not later than the third day after the primary election. A certificate of acceptance or declination of an independent nomination for an office to be filled at a special election shall be filed not later than fourteen days following the issuance of a proclamation of such election.
12. A certificate to fill a vacancy caused by a declination of an independent nomination for an office to be filled at the time of a general election shall be filed not later than the sixth day after the [eleventh] THIRTEENTH Tuesday preceding such election. A certificate to fill a vacancy caused by a declination of an independent nomination for an office to be filled at a special election shall be filed not later than sixteen days following the issuance of a proclamation of such election. 14. A vacancy occurring [before September twentieth of] NOT LESS THAN THREE MONTHS BEFORE THE NEXT GENERAL ELECTION IN any year in any office authorized to be filled at a general election, except in the offices of governor, lieutenant-governor, or United States senator shall be filled at the general election held next thereafter, unless otherwise provided by the constitution, or unless previously filled at a special election. S 9. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 1 of section 8-100 of the election law, as amended by chapter 17 of the laws of 2007, is amended to read as follows: (a) A primary election[, to be known as the fall primary,] shall be held on the [first Tuesday after the second Monday] THIRD TUESDAY in [September] AUGUST before every general election unless otherwise changed by an act of the legislature. In each year in which electors of president and vice president of the United States are to be elected an additional primary election, to be known as the [spring] PRESIDENTIAL primary, shall be held on the first Tuesday in February unless otherwise changed by an act of the legislature, for the purpose of electing deleg- ates to the national convention, members of state and county committees and assembly district leaders and associate assembly district leaders. S 10. Subdivision 1 of section 9-211 of the election law, as added by chapter 181 of the laws of 2005, is amended to read as follows: 1. Within fifteen days after each general or special election, and within [seven] FIFTEEN days after every primary or village election conducted by the board of elections, the board of elections or a bipar- tisan committee appointed by such board shall manually audit the voter verifiable audit records from three percent of voting machines or systems within the jurisdiction of such board. Voting machines or systems shall be selected for audit through a random, manual process. At least five days prior to the time fixed for such selection process, the board of elections shall send notice by first class mail to each candi- date, political party and independent body entitled to have had watchers present at the polls in any election district in such board's jurisdic- tion. Such notice shall state the time and place fixed for such random selection process. The audit shall be conducted in the same manner, to the extent applicable, as a canvass of paper ballots. Each candidate, political party or independent body entitled to appoint watchers to attend at a polling place shall be entitled to appoint such number of watchers to observe the audit. S 11. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 1 of section 10-108 of the election law, as amended by chapter 4 of the laws of 2011, is amended to read as follows: (a) Ballots for military voters shall be mailed or otherwise distrib- uted by the board of elections, in accordance with the preferred method of transmission designated by the voter pursuant to section 10-107 of this article, as soon as practicable but in any event not later than [thirty-two] FORTY-FIVE days before a primary or general election[; twenty-five days before], a New York city community school board district or city of Buffalo school district election[; fourteen days
before]
, OR a village election conducted by the board of elections; and forty-five days before a special election. A voter who submits a mili- tary ballot application shall be entitled to a military ballot thereaft- er for each subsequent election through and including the next two regu- larly scheduled general elections held in even numbered years, including any run-offs which may occur; provided, however, such application shall not be valid for any election held within seven days after its receipt. Ballots shall also be mailed to any qualified military voter who is already registered and who requests such military ballot from such board of elections in a letter, which is signed by the voter and received by the board of elections not later than the seventh day before the election for which the ballot is requested and which states the address where the voter is registered and the address to which the ballot is to be mailed. The board of elections shall enclose with such ballot a form of application for military ballot. In the case of a primary election, the board shall deliver only the ballot of the party with which the military voter is enrolled according to the military voter's registra- tion records. In the event a primary election is uncontested in the military voter's election district for all offices or positions except the party position of member of the ward, town, city or county commit- tee, no ballot shall be delivered to such military voter for such election; and the military voter shall be advised of the reason why he or she will not receive a ballot. S 12. Subdivision 4 of section 11-204 of the election law, as amended by chapter 4 of the laws of 2011, is amended to read as follows: 4. If the board of elections shall determine that the applicant making the application provided for in this section is qualified to receive and vote a special federal ballot, it shall, as soon as practicable after it shall have so determined, or not later than [thirty-two] FORTY-FIVE days before each general or primary [election and forty-five days before each] OR special election in which such applicant is qualified to vote, or three days after receipt of such an application, whichever is later, mail to him or her at the residence address outside the United States shown in his or her application, a special federal ballot, an inner affirmation envelope and an outer envelope, or otherwise distribute same to the voter in accordance with the preferred method of transmission designated by the voter pursuant to section 11-203 of this title. The board of elections shall also mail, or otherwise distribute in accord- ance with the preferred method of transmission designated by the voter pursuant to section 11-203 of this title, a special federal ballot to every qualified special federal voter who is already registered and who requests such special federal ballot from such board of elections in a letter, which is signed by the voter and received by the board of elections not later than the seventh day before the election for which the ballot is first requested and which states the address where the voter is registered and the address to which the ballot is to be mailed. The board of elections shall enclose with such ballot a form of applica- tion for a special federal ballot. S 13. Subdivisions 1 and 4 of section 42 of the public officers law, subdivision 1 as amended by chapter 878 of the laws of 1946 and subdivi- sion 4 as amended by chapter 317 of the laws of 1954, are amended to read as follows: 1. A vacancy occurring [before September twentieth of] NOT LESS THAN THREE MONTHS BEFORE THE NEXT GENERAL ELECTION IN any year in any office authorized to be filled at a general election, except in the offices of governor or lieutenant-governor, shall be filled at the general election
held next thereafter, unless otherwise provided by the constitution, or unless previously filled at a special election. 4. A special election shall not be held to fill a vacancy in the office of a representative in congress unless such vacancy occurs on or before the first day of July of the last year of the term of office, or unless it occurs thereafter and a special session of congress is called to meet before the next general election, or be called after [September] AUGUST nineteenth of such year; nor to fill a vacancy in the office of state senator or in the office of member of assembly, unless the vacancy occurs before the first day of April of the last year of the term of office, or unless the vacancy occurs in either such office of senator or member of assembly after such first day of April and a special session of the legislature be called to meet between such first day of April and the next general election or be called after [September] AUGUST nine- teenth in such year. If a special election to fill an office shall not be held as required by law, the office shall be filled at the next general election. S 14. This act shall take effect immediately.

Comments

Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.

Discuss!

blog comments powered by Disqus