senate Bill S3342

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Relates to voting and registration for voting by convicted felons

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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 08, 2014 referred to elections
Feb 01, 2013 referred to elections

Co-Sponsors

S3342 - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Election Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §5-106, El L; amd §259-c, Exec L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Sessions:
2011-2012: S2760A
2009-2010: S4643

S3342 - Bill Texts

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Relates to voting and registration for voting by convicted felons; provides such convicted felons may vote if pardoned, such persons maximum sentence of imprisonment has expired, or such person is serving a term of parole, presumptive release, conditional release or post-release supervision.

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BILL NUMBER:S3342

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the election law and the executive
law, in relation to voting by convicted felons

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: This bill would restore voting
rights to parolees, to facilitate community reintegration and
participation in the civic process, rather than requiring a parolee to
wait until he or she has been discharged from parole or reached the
maximum expiration date of the sentence.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

Section one of the bill amends subdivision two of section 5-106 of the
Election Law to restore voting rights to individuals who have been
released to community supervision from New York state sentences
imposed as a result of New York felony convictions. Election Law
5-10G(2) bars a person convicted of a New York felony from voting or
registering to vote, and also, as currently drafted, restores voting
rights when the person is either discharged from parole or reaches the
maximum expiration date of his or her sentence. This bill would
restore voting rights while the person is serving the community
supervision portion of the sentence, so that he or she can exercise
the civic responsibility of voting. Sections two and three of the bill
make similar changes to subdivisions three and four of EL5S-106, which
deal respectively with federal felony convictions and felony
convictions in other states.

Section 4 of the bill requires the Division of Parole to make voter
registration forms available to parolees.

Section 5 of the bill is the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION: Under current law, a felony conviction imposes a
variety of disabilities, including a bar to voting, and the voting bar
may be removed only by discharge from, or completion of, the sentence
as provided in the Election Law, or by issuance of a certificate of
relief from disabilities or a certificate of good conduct under
Article 23 of the Correction Law. Certificates of relief and good
conduct may be issued to relieve eligible offenders of a variety of
different disabilities, and may be specifically limited to one or more
enumerated forfeiture, disability or bar. See Correction Law
701(l), 703-a(1). However, these certificates are not issued
automatically, even for the limited purpose of restoring voting
rights, and some releasees supervised by the Division of Parole may
not be eligible for certificates of good conduct until they meet
statutory waiting periods. Thus, many, if not most, releasees cannot
vote until after their periods of community supervision are over.

Parole is meant to help prevent recidivism and to rehabilitate and
reinitiate a felon back into society. This rehabilitation is built on
the offender's recognition of fault, taking responsibility for his or
her behavior, and his or her effort to change. Preventing releasees
from voting, and from exercising a constitutional right and a civic
responsibility, is a barrier to full reintegration into society. It
also continues to punish people who have already served the


incarcerative parts of their sentences, and that part of their debt to
society.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2009-10: S.4643/A.2445 (O'Donnell)
Referred to Elections Committee

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately, except that
section 4 shall take effect 120 days after becoming law, to give the
Division of Parole time to implement section 4.

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

                                  3342

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            February 1, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sens. HASSELL-THOMPSON, KRUEGER, MONTGOMERY -- read twice
  and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee
  on Elections

AN ACT to amend the election law and the executive law, in  relation  to
  voting by convicted felons

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

  Section 1. Subdivision 2 of section 5-106  of  the  election  law,  as
amended  by  chapter  373  of  the  laws  of 1978, is amended to read as
follows:
  2. No person who has been convicted of a felony pursuant to  the  laws
of  this  state,  shall  have  the  right to register for or vote at any
election unless [he]: (I)  SUCH  PERSON  shall  have  been  pardoned  or
restored  to  the  rights  of citizenship by the governor, or [his] (II)
SUCH PERSON'S maximum sentence of imprisonment has expired, or  [he  has
been  discharged  from  parole.  The  governor, however, may attach as a
condition to any such pardon a provision that any such person shall  not
have  the right of suffrage until it shall have been separately restored
to him] (III) SUCH PERSON IS  SERVING  A  TERM  OF  PAROLE,  PRESUMPTIVE
RELEASE, CONDITIONAL RELEASE OR POST-RELEASE SUPERVISION.
  S  2. Subdivision 3 of section 5-106 of the election law is amended to
read as follows:
  3. No person who has been convicted in a federal court, of  a  felony,
or  a crime or offense which would constitute a felony under the laws of
this state, shall have the right to register for or vote at any election
unless [he]: (I) SUCH PERSON shall have been pardoned or restored to the
rights of citizenship by the president of the United  States,  or  [his]
(II)  SUCH PERSON'S maximum sentence of imprisonment has expired, or [he
has been discharged from parole] (III) SUCH PERSON IS SERVING A TERM  OF
PAROLE,  PRESUMPTIVE RELEASE, CONDITIONAL RELEASE OR POST-RELEASE SUPER-
VISION.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01660-01-3

S. 3342                             2

  S 3. Subdivision 4 of section 5-106 of the election law is amended  to
read as follows:
  4.  No  person  who has been convicted in another state for a crime or
offense which would constitute a felony under the  laws  of  this  state
shall  have  the  right  to register for or vote at any election in this
state unless [he]: (I) SUCH PERSON shall have been pardoned or  restored
to  the  rights  of  citizenship  by  the  governor or other appropriate
authority of such other state,  or  [his]  (II)  SUCH  PERSON'S  maximum
sentence has expired, or [he has been discharged from parole] (III) SUCH
PERSON  IS  SERVING  A  TERM OF PAROLE, PRESUMPTIVE RELEASE, CONDITIONAL
RELEASE OR POST-RELEASE SUPERVISION.
  S 4. Section 259-c of the executive law is amended  by  adding  a  new
subdivision 7 to read as follows:
  7.  HAVE  THE DUTY TO PROVIDE VOTER REGISTRATION FORMS TO EVERY PERSON
ON PAROLE, PRESUMPTIVE  RELEASE,  CONDITIONAL  RELEASE  OR  POST-RELEASE
SUPERVISION  AT  THE  TIME  SUCH PERSON IS RELEASED TO SUPERVISION OR AS
SOON THEREAFTER AS PRACTICABLE;
  S 5. This act shall take effect immediately, provided,  however,  that
section  four of this act shall take effect on the one hundred twentieth
day after it shall have become a law.

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