senate Bill S2339A

Eliminates the requirement for the use of electronic voting machines during village, special district, library district and fire district elections

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 19 / Jan / 2011
    • REFERRED TO ELECTIONS
  • 25 / Jan / 2011
    • AMEND (T) AND RECOMMIT TO ELECTIONS
  • 25 / Jan / 2011
    • PRINT NUMBER 2339A
  • 31 / Jan / 2011
    • 1ST REPORT CAL.45
  • 01 / Feb / 2011
    • 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • 07 / Feb / 2011
    • ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • 14 / Feb / 2011
    • PASSED SENATE
  • 14 / Feb / 2011
    • DELIVERED TO ASSEMBLY
  • 14 / Feb / 2011
    • REFERRED TO ELECTION LAW
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • DIED IN ASSEMBLY
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • RETURNED TO SENATE
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO ELECTIONS

Summary

Eliminates the requirement for the use of electronic voting machines during village, special district, improvement district, library district and fire district elections and authorizes the use of mechanical lever voting machines or paper ballots during such elections through December 31, 2012; establishes certain requirements for paper ballots.

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Bill Details

Versions:
S2339
S2339A
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Elections
Law Section:
Election Law
Laws Affected:
Add §7-132, amd §§7-200 & 7-203, El L; amd §176, Town L

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S2339A

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the election law, in relation to authorizing village,
special district, improvement district and library district elections
to be conducted on mechanical lever voting machines
or paper ballots; and to amend the
town law, in relation to authorizing the use of mechanical lever
voting machines or paper ballots at fire district elections

PURPOSE:
This bill would allow villages, special districts, improvement
districts, library districts and fire districts to use mechanical
lever voting machines during their elections or paper ballots.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of the Bill adds new section 7-132 to the Election Law to
allow villages, special districts, improvement districts, fire
districts and library districts conducting an election in which paper
ballots are to be counted by hand to use paper ballots in a form
described in said section.

Sections 2 through 4 of the Bill amends the election law and town law
to authorize villages, special districts, improvement districts,
library districts, and fire districts to use mechanical lever voting
machines or paper ballots for their elections instead of the new
scanner voting machines.

Section 5 of the Bill is the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION:
The recent enactment of amendments to New York's Election Law for the
purpose of implementing the new scanner voting machines has resulted
in numerous unintended consequences. The confusion and expense that
the 2010 amendments are causing for villages, special districts, fire
districts, improvement districts and library districts seeking to
conduct their elections are significant. Chapter 165 of the Laws of
2010 radically amended the provisions of State Law regarding the use
of paper ballots. Currently, New York's Election Law only addresses
the format of paper ballots that are to be used by scanner voting
machines. New York's Election Law does not provide for any other form
of paper ballot. Consequently, villages, special districts, fire
districts, improvement districts and library districts that are
conducting elections by hand count must either use
paper ballots that are in a format that complies with state law but
that are unsuitable for the hand counting process or use paper
ballots in a format that work for hand counted elections, but which
do not comply with state law. This legislation will correct this
oversight.

In addition, many villages, improvement districts, special districts
(fire districts) and library districts continue to have access to the
mechanical lever machines that were used in pre-2010 elections. The
use of these mechanical lever voting machines would create real
savings to villages, improvement districts, special districts and


library districts from the high cost associated with the use of the
new scanning machines.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
New legislation.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None to the state. The villages, special districts, fire districts,
improvement districts and library districts will receive significant
savings if this Bill is enacted.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect immediately.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                 2339--A

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 19, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sens. MARTINS, JOHNSON, GALLIVAN, MAZIARZ, OPPENHEIMER --
  read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to  be  committed  to
  the  Committee  on  Elections  --  committee discharged, bill amended,
  ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee

AN ACT to amend the election law, in relation  to  authorizing  village,
  special  district, improvement district and library district elections
  to be conducted on mechanical lever voting machines or paper  ballots;
  and  to  amend  the  town  law,  in relation to authorizing the use of
  mechanical lever voting machines or paper  ballots  at  fire  district
  elections;  and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon expi-
  ration thereof

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  The election law is amended by adding a new section 7-132
to read as follows:
  S  7-132.  PAPER  BALLOTS;  VILLAGE,  SPECIAL  DISTRICT,   IMPROVEMENT
DISTRICT,  LIBRARY  DISTRICT  AND  FIRE  DISTRICT  ELECTIONS. 1. FOR ANY
VILLAGE, SPECIAL DISTRICT, IMPROVEMENT  DISTRICT,  LIBRARY  DISTRICT  OR
FIRE  DISTRICT  CONDUCTING  AN ELECTION IN WHICH PAPER BALLOTS ARE TO BE
COUNTED BY HAND, THE FORMAT OF SUCH PAPER BALLOTS SHALL CONFORM  TO  THE
PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION.
  2.  ALL  PAPER  BALLOTS  SHALL BE PRINTED ON PAPER OF A QUALITY, SIZE,
COLOR AND WEIGHT AS SHALL BE DETERMINED BY THE STATE BOARD OF  ELECTIONS
ON OR BEFORE JULY SEVENTH, TWO THOUSAND ELEVEN.
  3.  ALL PAPER BALLOTS OF THE SAME KIND AT THE SAME POLLING PLACE SHALL
BE IDENTICAL IN APPEARANCE AND FORM.  A  DIFFERENT,  BUT  IN  EACH  CASE
UNIFORM  STYLE  AND  SIZE OF TYPE, SHALL BE USED FOR THE PRINTING OF THE
NAMES OF CANDIDATES, THE TITLES OF OFFICES,  POLITICAL  DESIGNATION  AND
THE  READING FORM OF ALL PROPOSALS AND QUESTIONS PRESENTED. THE NAMES OF
ALL CANDIDATES SHALL BE PRINTED IN UPPER-CASE  LETTERS,  IN  BLACK-FACED
TYPE.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD04799-04-1

S. 2339--A                          2

  4.  EACH PAPER BALLOT SHALL BE PRINTED ON A SINGLE SHEET OF PAPER WITH
A DETACHABLE STUB WHICH MAY BE SEPARATED THEREFROM  ALONG  A  PERFORATED
HORIZONTAL LINE ACROSS THE ENTIRE BALLOT. ON THE FACE OF SUCH STUB SHALL
BE PRINTED THE INSTRUCTIONS TO THE VOTER, AND ON THE BACK THEREOF, IMME-
DIATELY  ABOVE  THE CENTER OF THE ENDORSEMENT ON THE REAR OF THE BALLOT,
SHALL BE PRINTED "#" WITH THE BLANK  SPACE  FILLED  IN  BY  AN  ELECTION
INSPECTOR  WITH  THE  CONSECUTIVE NUMBER OF BALLOTS CAST AT THE ELECTION
BEGINNING WITH #1, AND INCREASING IN REGULAR NUMERICAL ORDER.
  5. ON THE REAR OF THE BALLOT, BELOW THE LINE OF PERFORATIONS, JUST  TO
THE  RIGHT  OF  CENTER  AND  APPEARING ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE BALLOT WHEN
FOLDED, AND ALSO ON THE FRONT OF THE BALLOT, DIRECTLY BELOW THE LINE  OF
PERFORATIONS, SHALL BE PRINTED THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION:
  "OFFICIAL BALLOT FOR (VILLAGE, SPECIAL DISTRICT, IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT,
LIBRARY DISTRICT OR FIRE DISTRICT) OFFICERS AND PROPOSITIONS
  (THE DATE OF THE ELECTION)
  (A  FACSIMILE  SIGNATURE  OF  THE  OFFICER  OR OFFICERS PROVIDING SUCH
BALLOT)".
  6. ON THE TOP OF THE DETACHABLE STUB OR ON THE EDGE OF THE BALLOT, THE
FOLLOWING INSTRUCTIONS SHALL BE PRINTED IN HEAVY BLACK TYPE:
                              "INSTRUCTIONS
  (A) MARK ONLY WITH A PEN HAVING BLUE OR BLACK INK  OR  WITH  A  PENCIL
HAVING BLACK LEAD.
  (B)  TO VOTE FOR A CANDIDATE WHOSE NAME IS PRINTED ON THIS BALLOT MAKE
A SINGLE CROSS X MARK OR A CHECK V MARK IN ONE OF  THE  SQUARES  TO  THE
RIGHT OF AN EMBLEM OPPOSITE HIS OR HER NAME.
  (C)  TO  VOTE  FOR  A  PERSON WHOSE NAME IS NOT PRINTED ON THIS BALLOT
WRITE OR STAMP HIS OR HER NAME ON A BLANK LINE UNDER THE  NAMES  OF  THE
CANDIDATES FOR THAT OFFICE.
  (D)  TO  VOTE YES OR NO ON A PROPOSAL MAKE A SINGLE X OR V MARK IN THE
SQUARE OPPOSITE YOUR VOTE.
  (E) ANY OTHER MARK OR WRITING, OR ANY  ERASURE  MADE  ON  THIS  BALLOT
OUTSIDE THE VOTING SQUARES OR BLANK SPACES PROVIDED FOR VOTING WILL VOID
THIS ENTIRE BALLOT.
  (F) DO NOT OVERVOTE. IF YOU SELECT A GREATER NUMBER OF CANDIDATES THAN
THERE  ARE  VACANCIES  TO  BE  FILLED, YOUR BALLOT WILL BE VOID FOR THAT
PUBLIC OFFICE OR PARTY POSITION.
  (G) IF YOU TEAR, DEFACE OR WRONGLY MARK THIS  BALLOT,  RETURN  IT  AND
OBTAIN  ANOTHER.  DO  NOT  ATTEMPT  TO CORRECT MISTAKES ON THE BALLOT BY
MAKING ERASURES OR CROSS OUTS. ERASURES OR CROSS OUTS MAY INVALIDATE ALL
OR PART OF YOUR BALLOT. PRIOR TO SUBMITTING YOUR BALLOT, IF YOU  MAKE  A
MISTAKE  IN COMPLETING THE BALLOT OR WISH TO CHANGE YOUR BALLOT CHOICES,
YOU MAY OBTAIN AND COMPLETE A NEW BALLOT. YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO A REPLACE-
MENT BALLOT UPON RETURN OF THE ORIGINAL BALLOT."
  7. EACH BALLOT SHALL BE PRINTED IN SECTIONS IN WHICH  THE  CANDIDATES'
NAMES,  EMBLEMS  AND  POLITICAL  DESIGNATIONS,  THE BALLOT PROPOSALS AND
OTHER REQUISITE MATTER SHALL EACH BE BOXED IN BY HEAVY BLACK LINES.
  ON THE BALLOT SHALL BE VOTING SQUARES IN WHICH VOTERS MAY  MAKE  THEIR
VOTING  MARKS. ALL VOTING SQUARES SHALL BE BOUNDED BY HEAVY BLACK LINES,
THE PERPENDICULAR LINES TO BE NOT LESS THAN ONE-SIXTEENTH  OF  ONE  INCH
WIDE.    THE  VOTING SQUARES AND THE SPACES OCCUPIED BY THE EMBLEM SHALL
HAVE A DEPTH AND WIDTH OF FIVE-SIXTEENTHS OF ONE INCH. NO VOTING  SQUARE
SHALL  BE  PROVIDED IN FRONT OF THE BLANK SPACES PROVIDED FOR A VOTER TO
WRITE IN A NAME.
  8. THE SPACE FOR THE TITLE OF AN OFFICE SHALL BE THREE-EIGHTHS OF  ONE
INCH,  AND  THE NAME OF A CANDIDATE OR FOR WRITING IN A NAME, ONE-FOURTH
OF ONE INCH, IN DEPTH. AT THE LEFT OF THE NAME OF EACH DESIGNATED CANDI-

S. 2339--A                          3

DATE SHALL BE AN ENCLOSED VOTING SPACE, THREE-EIGHTHS  OF  ONE  INCH  IN
WIDTH  AND APPROXIMATELY ONE-FOURTH OF ONE INCH IN DEPTH, BOUNDED ABOVE,
BELOW AND TO THE RIGHT BY BLACK LINES, HEAVIER THAN THOSE WHICH SEPARATE
THE  SPACES  CONTAINING  THE  NAMES OF CANDIDATES. TO THE LEFT OF VOTING
SPACES WHICH DO NOT ADJOIN A VERTICAL LINE  DIVIDING  TWO  PARTS,  THERE
SHALL  BE  A  HEAVY  BLACK VERTICAL LINE APPROXIMATELY ONE-EIGHTH OF ONE
INCH IN WIDTH. NO VOTING SPACE SHALL BE PROVIDED IN THE SPACE FOR  WRIT-
ING  IN  NAMES.  IN SUCH CASE, THE SPACE CORRESPONDING TO A VOTING SPACE
SHALL BE ALL BLACK.
  9. BELOW THE NAMES OF THE CANDIDATES FOR EACH OFFICE OR POSITION THERE
SHALL BE PRINTED AS MANY BLANK SPACES, FOR WRITING IN NAMES  OF  PERSONS
FOR WHOM THE VOTER DESIRES TO VOTE, AS THERE ARE PERSONS TO BE NOMINATED
OR ELECTED.
  10.  IN  CASE  THE SECTIONS SHALL BE SO NUMEROUS AS TO MAKE THE BALLOT
UNWIELDY IF THEY ARE PRINTED IN ONE COLUMN, THEY MAY BE  PRINTED  IN  AS
MANY  COLUMNS  AS  SHALL  BE  NECESSARY,  AND  IN THAT CASE, IN ORDER TO
PRODUCE A RECTANGULAR BALLOT, BLANK SECTIONS MAY BE USED.
  11. THE NAMES OF PARTIES OR INDEPENDENT BODIES WHICH CONTAIN MORE THAN
FIFTEEN LETTERS MAY, WHENEVER LIMITATIONS OF SPACE SO REQUIRE, BE PRINT-
ED ON THE BALLOT IN AN ABBREVIATED FORM. IN PRINTING THE NAMES OF CANDI-
DATES WHOSE FULL NAMES CONTAIN  MORE  THAN  FIFTEEN  LETTERS,  ONLY  THE
SURNAME  MUST  BE PRINTED IN FULL. THE OFFICER OR BOARD CHARGED WITH THE
DUTY OF PREPARING THE BALLOTS SHALL REQUEST EACH SUCH CANDIDATE TO INDI-
CATE,  IN  WRITING,  THE  SHORTENED  FORM  IN  WHICH,  SUBJECT  TO   THE
RESTRICTION,  HIS  NAME  SHALL  BE  PRINTED.  IF  NO  SUCH INDICATION IS
RECEIVED FROM SUCH CANDIDATE WITHIN THE TIME SPECIFIED IN  THE  REQUEST,
SUCH  OFFICER OR BOARD SHALL MAKE THE NECESSARY DETERMINATION. NO EMBLEM
SHALL OCCUPY A SPACE LONGER IN ANY DIRECTION THAN THE VOTING  SQUARE  TO
WHICH IT RELATES.
  S 2. Subdivision 1 of section 7-200 of the election law, as amended by
chapter 181 of the laws of 2005, is amended to read as follows:
  1.  The  board  of  elections of the city of New York and other county
boards of elections may adopt any  kind  of  voting  machine  or  system
approved  by  the state board of elections, or the use of which has been
specifically authorized by law; and thereupon  such  voting  machine  or
system  may  be  used  at  any or all elections and shall be used at all
general or special elections held by such boards in such city,  town  or
village  and in every contested primary election in the city of New York
and in every contested primary election outside the city of New York  in
which  there are one thousand or more enrolled voters qualified to vote;
PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT SUCH MACHINES AND SYSTEMS SHALL NOT BE  REQUIRED
TO  BE  USED  IN  ANY VILLAGE, SPECIAL DISTRICT, IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT OR
LIBRARY DISTRICT  ELECTION  AND  THE  USE  OF  MECHANICAL  LEVER  VOTING
MACHINES  SHALL  BE  AUTHORIZED FOR VILLAGE ELECTIONS.  No more than two
types of voting machines or systems may be used by any  local  board  of
elections  at a single election. Notwithstanding the other provisions of
this subdivision, any local board of elections may borrow or  lease  for
use  on  an  experimental  basis  for a period of not more than one year
each, voting machines or systems of any type approved by the state board
of elections.
  S 3. Subdivision 1 of section 7-203 of the election law, as amended by
chapter 180 of the laws of 2005, is amended to read as follows:
  1. The board of elections shall provide a sufficient number of  voting
machines  to fully equip all election districts within its jurisdiction.
Such voting machines shall be used at all general, special  and  primary
elections  conducted  pursuant  to this chapter; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT

S. 2339--A                          4

THE USE OF SUCH VOTING MACHINES SHALL NOT BE  REQUIRED  DURING  VILLAGE,
SPECIAL DISTRICT, IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT OR LIBRARY DISTRICT ELECTIONS AND
THE  USE  OF  MECHANICAL LEVER VOTING MACHINES OR PAPER BALLOTS SHALL BE
AUTHORIZED AT SUCH ELECTIONS.
  S  4. Subdivision 29 of section 176 of the town law, as added by chap-
ter 568 of the laws of 1949, is amended to read as follows:
  29. May authorize the use of voting machines at any annual or  special
election  held within the fire district and such voting machine shall be
used in accordance with the provisions contained in article nine of  the
election  law,  PROVIDED  THAT  NO  PROVISION  OF LAW SHALL BE DEEMED TO
PROHIBIT THE USE OF MECHANICAL LEVER VOTING MACHINES OR PAPER BALLOTS AT
ANY SUCH ELECTION.
  S 5. This act shall take effect immediately and shall  expire  and  be
deemed repealed December 31, 2012.

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