senate Bill S5237

2011-2012 Legislative Session

Provides that the board of elections shall accept voter registrations electronically through its website

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


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

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 04, 2012 referred to elections
May 03, 2011 referred to elections

S5237 - Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A8632
Current Committee:
Law Section:
Election Law
Laws Affected:
Add §5-209, El L
Versions Introduced in 2009-2010 Legislative Session:
A4799

S5237 - Bill Texts

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Provides that the board of elections shall accept voter registrations electronically through its website.

view sponsor memo
BILL NUMBER:S5237

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the election law, in relation to authorizing electronic voter
registration

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
Provides that the Board of Elections
shall accept voter registrations electronically through its website
in order to improve poll book accuracy and remove the voter
registration backlogs that appeared prior to the 2008 General Election.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 adds §5-209 to the
Election Law and requires the State Board of Elections to implement
online voter registration using similar provision to the voter
registration card. Registrants who provide a DMV client
identification number would have their signature transferred from the
DMV. Registrants providing only a social security number would need
to show identification when voting for the first since they would be
unable to meet New York State's signature requirements.

JUSTIFICATION:
In the first two weeks of October in 2008 the New York
City Board of Elections was crushed under nearly 204,000 voter
registration forms which it had significantly difficulty processing.
This brought the 2008 total for voter registrations received by the
New York City Board of Election to nearly 715,000, as compared with
253,000 in all of 2007. Local Boards of Elections throughout the State
reported similar unprecedented volume.

Local Boards of Elections struggled to get thousands of voter
registration records entered in time for the General Election.
However, many voters still reported that their names were not in poll
books. Many of these voters fell victim to data entry errors, where a
simple misspelling in an often ethnic name, made it nearly impossible
to locate their name in the poll book and vote on a machine.

This legislation would use online voter registration to improve poll
book accuracy and cure recent backlogs at local Boards of Election
across the State

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
None.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
Projected cost savings in data entry costs for
local Boards of Elections.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect immediately on the 180th day after
becoming a law.


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

                                  5237

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                               May 3, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sen. CARLUCCI -- 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 authorizing  electronic
  voter registration

  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  5-209
to read as follows:
  S  5-209.  ELECTRONIC  VOTER REGISTRATION. 1. IN ADDITION TO ANY OTHER
METHODS OF VOTER REGISTRATION PROVIDED FOR IN THIS ARTICLE,  ANY  QUALI-
FIED  PERSON  MAY  APPLY  FOR REGISTRATION AND ENROLLMENT BY APPLICATION
MADE ELECTRONICALLY THROUGH THE STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS WEBSITE.
  2. THE STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS SHALL DESIGN A WEBPAGE THAT SERVES  AS
AN  ELECTRONIC  APPLICATION  FOR  REGISTRATION AND ENROLLMENT FORM, OR A
REGISTRATION FORM NECESSITATED BY A CHANGE OF RESIDENCE.
  3. THE VOTER REGISTRATION WEBPAGE:
  (A) SHALL REQUIRE ONLY SUCH INFORMATION AS WILL ENABLE ELECTION  OFFI-
CIALS TO ASSESS THE APPLICANT'S ELIGIBILITY TO REGISTER TO VOTE, PREVENT
DUPLICATE  REGISTRATION  AND  TO ADMINISTER VOTER REGISTRATION AND OTHER
PARTS OF THE ELECTION PROCESS.
  (B) SHALL INCLUDE A STATEMENT  OF  THE  ELIGIBILITY  REQUIREMENTS  FOR
VOTER  REGISTRATION  AND SHALL REQUIRE THE APPLICANT TO ATTEST BY HIS OR
HER SIGNATURE THAT HE OR SHE MEETS THOSE REQUIREMENTS UNDER  PENALTY  OF
PERJURY.
  (C) SHALL INFORM THE APPLICANT, IN PRINT IDENTICAL TO THAT USED IN THE
ATTESTATION SECTION OF THE FOLLOWING:
  (I) VOTER ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS; AND
  (II) PENALTIES FOR SUBMISSION OF FALSE REGISTRATION APPLICATION.
  (D)  SHALL REQUIRE THE APPLICANT TO SUBMIT AT LEAST ONE OF THE FOLLOW-
ING WITH HIS OR HER APPLICATION:
  (I) HIS OR HER SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER; OR

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD00675-01-1

S. 5237                             2

  (II) HIS OR HER VALID NEW YORK  STATE  DEPARTMENT  OF  MOTOR  VEHICLES
CLIENT IDENTIFICATION NUMBER.
  4. INCLUDED ON THE WEBPAGE SHALL BE:
  (A)  THE  STATEMENT,  "IF YOU BELIEVE THAT SOMEONE HAS INTERFERED WITH
YOUR RIGHT TO REGISTER OR DECLINE TO REGISTER TO  VOTE,  YOUR  RIGHT  TO
PRIVACY  IN  DECIDING  WHETHER TO REGISTER OR IN APPLYING TO REGISTER TO
VOTE, OR YOUR RIGHT TO CHOOSE YOUR OWN POLITICAL PARTY  OR  OTHER  POLI-
TICAL  PREFERENCE,  YOU  MAY  FILE  A  COMPLAINT WITH THE STATE BOARD OF
ELECTIONS (ADDRESS AND TOLL FREE TELEPHONE NUMBER)."
  (B) A TOLL FREE NUMBER AT THE STATE BOARD OF  ELECTIONS  THAT  CAN  BE
CALLED FOR ANSWERS TO REGISTRATION QUESTIONS.
  5.  WHENEVER AN APPLICANT SUPPLIES THE BOARD WITH HIS OR HER VALID NEW
YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES  CLIENT  IDENTIFICATION  NUMBER,
SUCH  APPLICANT'S  IDENTIFICATION  SHALL  BE  DEEMED VERIFIED. THE BOARD
SHALL IMPORT THE APPLICANT'S SIGNATURE  FROM  THE  DEPARTMENT  OF  MOTOR
VEHICLES  TO  BE USED FOR VERIFICATION PURPOSES AT THE TIME OF CASTING A
BALLOT.
  6. ELECTRONIC REGISTRATIONS MADE NOT  LATER  THAN  THE  TWENTIETH  DAY
BEFORE  AN ELECTION SHALL ENTITLE THE APPLICANT TO VOTE IN SUCH ELECTION
PROVIDED THE BOARD DETERMINES THAT THE APPLICANT IS OTHERWISE QUALIFIED.
  7. ELECTRONIC APPLICATION FORMS SHALL  BE PROCESSED BY  THE  BOARD  OF
ELECTIONS IN THE MANNER PRESCRIBED BY SECTION 5-210 OF THIS TITLE OR, IF
THE APPLICANT IS ALREADY REGISTERED TO VOTE FROM ANOTHER ADDRESS IN SUCH
COUNTY OR CITY, IN THE MANNER PRESCRIBED BY SECTION 5-208 OF THIS TITLE.
THE  BOARD SHALL SEND THE APPROPRIATE NOTICE OF APPROVAL OR REJECTION AS
REQUIRED BY EITHER SUBDIVISION NINE OF SUCH SECTION 5-210 OR SUBDIVISION
FIVE OF SUCH SECTION 5-208.
  8. THE STATE BOARD SHALL ADOPT SUCH RULES AND REGULATIONS  AS  MAY  BE
NECESSARY  TO  CARRY  OUT  THE REQUIREMENTS OF THIS SECTION.   THE BOARD
SHALL ALSO ADOPT SUCH RULES AND  REGULATIONS  AS  MAY  BE  NECESSARY  TO
REQUIRE  COUNTY  BOARDS TO PROVIDE THE STATE BOARD WITH SUCH INFORMATION
AND DATA AS THE BOARD DEEMS NECESSARY TO  ASSESS  COMPLIANCE  WITH  THIS
SECTION AND TO COMPILE SUCH STATISTICS AS MAY BE REQUIRED BY THE FEDERAL
ELECTIONS COMMISSION.
  9. THE STATE BOARD SHALL DEVELOP AND DISTRIBUTE PUBLIC INFORMATION AND
PROMOTIONAL  MATERIALS  RELATING  TO  THE PURPOSES AND IMPLEMENTATION OF
THIS PROGRAM.
  10. THE DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES SHALL COOPERATE  WITH  THE  STATE
BOARD OF ELECTIONS IN IMPLEMENTING THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION.
  S 2. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after
it  shall have become a law. Effective immediately, the amendment, addi-
tion, and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for  the  timely
implementation of this act on its effective date is hereby authorized to
be made on or before such effective date.

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