Relates to watchers during election; provides that any candidate on the ballot and any political committee may have for each election district three watchers at any one time, not more than one of whom may be within the guard rail at any one time.
STATE OF NEW YORK
2019-2020 Regular Sessions
January 15, 2019
Introduced by M. of A. BUCHWALD -- read once and referred to the Commit-
tee on Election Law -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered
reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee
AN ACT to amend the election law, in relation to watchers during
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. Section 8-500 of the election law, as amended by chapter 9
2 of the laws of 1978, subdivisions 1 and 3 as amended by chapter 373 of
3 the laws of 1978, and subdivision 4 as amended by chapter 254 of the
4 laws of 2014, is amended to read as follows:
5 § 8-500. Watchers; provision for. 1. At any general, special, town or
6 village election, any party committee [or], any independent body whose
7 candidates are upon the ballot, [and at any primary election, any two or
8 more candidates and any political committee] and any political committee
9 supporting or opposing a ballot proposal may have for each election
10 district three watchers at any one time, not more than one of whom may
11 be within the guard rail at any one time. Watchers shall be appointed by
12 the [chairman] chair or other officer of any such party[,] committee
13 [or], independent body [or by the candidates] or political committee.
14 2. At any primary election, any party committee and any candidate on
15 the ballot may have for each election district three watchers at any one
16 time, not more than one of whom may be within the guard rail at any one
17 time. Watchers shall be appointed by the chair or other officer of any
18 such party committee or by any candidate.
19 3. Watchers may be present at the polling place at least fifteen
20 minutes before the unlocking and examination of any voting machine or
21 ballot box at the opening of the polls, until after the signing of the
22 inspectors' returns and proclamation of the result.
23 [3.] 4. The appointment of watchers for any election shall be by a
24 certificate in writing issued by the [chairman or secretary of the poli-
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.
A. 1525--A 2
1 tical party or independent body, or the candidates] appointing
2 authority. Such certificate shall be delivered to an inspector at the
3 election district.
4 [4.] 5. Each watcher must be a qualified voter of the city or county
5 in which he or she is to serve. No person shall be appointed or act as a
6 watcher who is a candidate for any public office to be voted for by the
7 voters of the election district in the same election in which the watch-
8 er is to serve. Nothing in this subdivision shall be construed as
9 prohibiting any such candidate from visiting a polling place in such
10 district on an election day while the polls are open.
11 § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.