Issues: Elections

Watchdog Groups Call For Independent Redistricting

Politics on the Hudson wrote about the need for the Legislature to return to session to approve independent redistricting, in light of the first public meeting of the Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment (LATFOR).

Remember independent redistricting?

After Gov. Andrew Cuomo scored legislative victories last month, there’s one glaring piece of unfinished piece: establishing an independent panel to draw district lines in 2012. Cuomo wants it done, but Senate Republicans balked and they left town without considering it.

But the issue will take center stage today when the Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment (LATFOR) holds its first public meeting this morning in Albany.

July 6, 2011
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O'Mara legislation approved to reduce costs for local boards of elections

Albany, N.Y.—The New York State Legislature has approved legislation sponsored by Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats), chairman of the Senate Elections Committee, to provide cost savings to localities by reducing the time local boards of elections are required to store unopened and unused election ballots.

June 23, 2011
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LaValle: Bill Enabling Discharge of Fire Commissioners For Unexcused Absences Passes Senate.

New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R, C, I-Port Jefferson) said today that his bill (S3101) enabling fire district commissioners who have excessive unexcused absences to be removed from office has passed the New York State Senate. The bill was passed on June 14. “Fire commissioners make most of the key decisions affecting fire and emergency medical service throughout New York State and sit on boards that have the authority to raise taxes and approve budgets to cover expenses including insurance,  payroll, pensions and the purchase of trucks, and other equipment,” LaValle said. Commission members, LaValle explained, set policy for fire districts, hire staff who maintain firehouses and dispatch calls.

June 16, 2011
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Senator Gianaris Opening Remarks at Independent Redistricting Forum

Senator Gianaris made opening remarks at the New York State Senate and Assembly Democrats joint-forum on redistricting, which was held on June 7.

June 13, 2011
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Senator Martins' Bill Allowing Fire Districts to Use Lever Voting Machines Passes Senate

A bill proposed by Senator Jack M. Martins to allow fire districts to use the traditional lever voting machines in their annual elections has passed the Senate.

Current election law requires the use of optical voting machines (scanner machines). This process would require fire districts to not only secure optical voting machines at a cost to the fire district but also fire districts would be required to purchase a paper ballot for the scanner machines for every registered voter in the district at a cost of $0.55 each.

June 8, 2011
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Senate Passes Initiative and Referendum

The New York State Senate today passed a constitutional amendment  that would give New Yorkers a more direct role in the legislative process by empowering them to enact and amend laws through initiative and referendum. The bill (S.709), sponsored by Senator Joseph Robach (R-C-I, Rochester), increases the ability of New Yorkers to place an issue on a ballot for a public vote.

June 7, 2011
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Redistricting reform down to the wire

The Legislative Gazette wrote an article about redistricting reform and the fact that a majority of New Yorkers support a nonpartisan redistricting process.

A Quinnipiac University poll released last Thursday indicates a majority of New Yorkers think creating a nonpartisan redistricting process for drawing state Senate, Assembly and Congressional lines is important, and those who have fought in Albany for years to achieve that end think it is closer than ever. However, a possible early primary next year could mean reform would have to be passed sooner, rather than later, to make a difference in the 2012 redistricting process.

June 7, 2011
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Committee Meeting: Elections Meeting

Senate Standing Committee on Elections Senator Thomas O'Mara, Chair 12:30 PM, Monday, June 6, 2011 Room 813 LOB

June 6, 12:30 PM - 12:34 PM
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New York State Demographic Trends Report, 2010

Attached are reports on demographic trends across New York, including data on Congressional districts and State Senate districts from 2010.

June 2, 2011
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Albany | December 16, 2010

Full transcript of the December 16, 2010 Albany hearing.

June 2, 2011
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Bill Would Require Disclosure of Spending for School Budget Votes

New legislation sponsored by Senator Kenneth LaValle and Assemblymember Sam Hoyt  (A7223/S5071) would amend state election law to require reporting by groups that spend $1,000 or more to influence public votes on school district budget votes outside of the “Big Five” city school districts. While there are currently disclosure requirements for monies spent on local school board elections, none are required for local school budget votes.

June 2, 2011
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Last Ditch Push On Redistricting

Gotham Gazette wrote about ReShape NY's Lobby Day event to push for redistricting, which Senator Gianaris attended. Senator Gianaris said, "Promises were made and it is time those promises were kept. Now is the time to discover who is a genuine Hero of Reform and who was just spouting empty campaign rhetoric."

June 2, 2011
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BALL RELEASES STATEMENT ON “PROTEST"

Ball, “Folks, let’s focus on jobs and taxes, not cheap political tricks.”

May 24, 2011
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Senator Ball Calls for Independent Redistricting, Constitutional Change, It's Time to Keep Our Promise

 

ALBANY, NY – Senator Greg Ball (R, C – Patterson) is embarking upon an effort to enlist all members in both houses to support what he calls, “real, lasting, and substantive changes to the current redistricting process” by supporting a bill amending the New York State Constitution to once and for all enact truly independent redistricting.

“Demographics and geography should decide district lines, not politics. The only real way to establish constitutional standards is by amending the constitution, the way our founders suggested, and make these changes permanent and constitutionally sound.”

May 24, 2011
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Military Voting

NYS Senator Bill Larkin comments on legislation which would allow more time for military absentee ballots to be mailed and counted in special elections.

May 18, 2011
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State elections

Redistricting, calendar up in the air

State lawmakers' penchant for procrastination could leave up to the courts key decisions governing the 2012 elections.

In the coming months, the Legislature has to confront two vexing issues: redistricting and changes to the start of the election cycle to comply with federal law. However, lawmakers have yet to act on either one individually, and a convergence of the two will make it even more difficult to resolve either in the coming weeks.

May 17, 2011
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N.Y. redistricting talks bog down

Ithaca Journal wrote an article about redistricting reform. We must to rally together in order to get this inportant reform passed.

ALBANY -- With just five weeks to go before the Legislature breaks for the summer, talk at the Capitol has been driven by Gov. Andrew Cuomo's legislative priorities: a property tax cap, an ethics overhaul and legalizing gay marriage.

Noticeably absent, however, has been much talk on redistricting reform, a major campaign issue that garnered significant attention earlier this session, but is still unresolved.

May 16, 2011
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City hearing sheds light on Census challenge

Queens Chronicle wrote an article on the latest developments regarding the Census and its flawed results. This is a serious problem and must be fixed.

At a City Council hearing on Monday, the Census Bureau’s New York regional director, Tony Farthing, testified that a processing error may have caused the agency to undercount city residents.

Farthing reportedly brought up the potential error in response to a comment by Councilman Vincent Gentile (D-Brooklyn), but did not explain exactly what type of error he was referring to.

May 12, 2011
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Committee Meeting: Elections Meeting

Senate Standing Committee on Elections Senator Thomas O'Mara, Chair 1:00 PM, Monday, May 2, 2011 Room 813 LOB

May 2, 1:00 PM - 1:13 PM
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