senate Bill S491

2021-2022 Legislative Session

Establishes a ranked choice voting method for certain local elections; provides for repeal of such provisions

download bill text pdf

Sponsored By

Current Bill Status - Stricken

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

Your Voice

do you support this bill?

Please enter your contact information

Home address is used to determine the senate district in which you reside. Your support or opposition to this bill is then shared immediately with the senator who represents you.

Optional services from the NY State Senate:

Create an account. An account allows you to officially support or oppose key legislation, sign petitions with a single click, and follow issues, committees, and bills that matter to you. When you create an account, you agree to this platform's terms of participation.

Include a custom message for your Senator? (Optional)

Enter a message to your senator. Many New Yorkers use this to share the reasoning behind their support or opposition to the bill. Others might share a personal anecdote about how the bill would affect them or people they care about.


view actions (2)
Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 11, 2021 recommit, enacting clause stricken
Jan 06, 2021 referred to elections


S491 (ACTIVE) - Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Election Law
Laws Affected:
Add Art 18 §§18-100 - 18-110, El L
Versions Introduced in Other Legislative Sessions:
2013-2014: S3250
2015-2016: S2741
2017-2018: S5616
2019-2020: S2717

S491 (ACTIVE) - Summary

Establishes a ranked choice voting method for certain local elections; provides for repeal of such provisions.

S491 (ACTIVE) - Sponsor Memo

S491 (ACTIVE) - Bill Text download pdf

                     S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
                        2021-2022 Regular Sessions
                             I N  S E N A T E
                              January 6, 2021
 Introduced  by  Sens.  KRUEGER,  HOYLMAN, MAY, SERRANO -- read twice and
   ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee  on
 AN  ACT  to amend the election law, in relation to establishing a ranked
   choice voting method for certain local elections;  and  providing  for
   the repeal of such provisions upon expiration thereof
   Section 1. Legislative findings. The current system  of  voting  often
 results  in the election of a candidate that does not  have the majority
 support of the electorate  when  there  are  three  or  more  candidates
 running  for  an elective office. Further, where there are three or more
 candidates for an elective office, voters often will not vote for  their
 preferred  candidate to avoid "wasting" their vote on a "spoiler" candi-
 date. Rather, they will vote against a candidate they dislike, by voting
 for a leading candidate that they perceive as the lesser of  two  evils.
 The  result  of  the  current system in multi-candidate races can be the
 election of candidates that lack majority support.
   The ranked choice voting method provides for the majority election for
 elective offices. Ranked choice voting gives voters the option  to  rank
 candidates  according  to  the  order  of  their choice. If no candidate
 obtains a majority of first-choice votes, then the  candidate  receiving
 the  fewest  first-choice  votes  is  eliminated. Each vote cast for the
 eliminated candidate shall be transferred to the candidate who  was  the
 voter's  next  choice  on  the  ballot. The process is continued until a
 candidate receives a majority of votes.
   There are several potential benefits to the ranked choice voting meth-
 od. First, voters are free to mark their ballot for the  candidate  they
 truly prefer without fear that their choice will  help elect their least
 preferred  candidate.  Second, it insures that the elected candidate has

  EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets


Open Legislation is a forum for New York State legislation. All comments are subject to review and community moderation is encouraged.

Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity, hate or toxic speech; or that link to sites outside of the domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Attempts to intimidate and silence contributors or deliberately deceive the public, including excessive or extraneous posting/posts, or coordinated activity, are prohibited and may result in the temporary or permanent banning of the user. 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.