Senate Passes Klein Bill to Shorten Election-Day Shifts for Poll Workers

Klein Bill Expands Opportunity for Seniors and the Physically Disabled to Participate in Democratic Process

ALBANY – State Senator and Deputy Majority Leader Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester) announced on Monday that the Senate passed legislation to shorten work shifts for election-day poll workers. The bill (S1836) permits local Boards of Elections to hire election inspectors for half-day shifts, preventing fatigue and flexibility for workers whose shifts often start before the polls open at 6 AM and end after they close at 9 PM.

"Allowing election inspectors to work half-day shifts is a common sense change to New York election law. This bill allows these workers, many of whom are seniors or physically disabled, to enthusiastically participate on election days without putting a strain on their well-being by having to endure a twelve-hour workday. By creating shorter shifts, we also expand an opportunity for other New Yorkers to participate in the democratic process who would otherwise be unable to help out at the polls," said State Senator and Deputy Majority Leader Jeffrey D. Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester).

Senator Klein’s legislation is in compliance with HAVA (Help America Vote Act,) which requires local Boards of Elections to have flexibility when employing election inspectors. In the past few weeks, the Senate passed a package of election reform bills to expanded public participation in and improve the electoral process. This includes legislation to keep confidential the voting registration records of victims of domestic violence (S5945); the creation of a uniform deadline for the publication of voter registration rolls (S4242); and legislation to require all buildings receiving public benefits to allot space for voter registration and voting (S5029).