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A10942 Summary:

BILL NOA10942
 
SAME ASSAME AS S08902
 
SPONSORRules (Gottfried)
 
COSPNSRSeawright, Mosley, Ryan, Abinanti, Bichotte, Simon, Thiele, Buchwald, Englebright
 
MLTSPNSR
 
Add 8-414, amd 8-410 & 8-412, El L
 
Authorizes boards of elections to establish absentee ballot drop-off locations.
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A10942 Memo:

NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
 
BILL NUMBER: A10942
 
SPONSOR: Rules (Gottfried)
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the election law, in relation to authorizing boards of elections to establish absentee ballot drop-off locations   PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: To allow local Boards of Elections to establish absentee ballot drop-off locations to provide voters with a convenient alternative option to submit their absentee ballots.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 1 adds a new Section 8-414 to the Election Law to authorize local Boards of Elections to establish absentee ballot drop-off locations and direct the State Board of Elections to promulgate regu- lations to implement the provisions of the section. Section 2 amends Section 8-410 of the Election Law to provide that absentee ballot envelopes may be deposited in an absentee ballot drop box established by the Board of Elections of the county or city of the voter's residence. Sections 3 and 4 amend Section 8-412 of the Election Law to deem an absentee ballot received by a local Board of Elections if it is deposit- ed in an absentee ballot drop box before the close of polls on election day, and require local Boards of Elections to close absentee ballot boxes at the close of polls and collect ballots deposited therein. Section 5 establishes the effective date of the bill.   JUSTIFICATION: As New York expands voters' ability to cast their votes via absentee ballot to cope with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, we should be providing voters with as many options to return their ballots as possi- ble. Many states currently authorize voters to return their voted ballots to election officials by depositing them in a secure drop box, rather than mailing them or bringing them in to a Board of Elections office. During the recent June primary elections, more than 84,000 mail.-in ballots were not counted or invalidated in New York City, which makes up a stunning 21% of all ballots received by the New York City Board of Elections. Many of these ballots were invalidated for issues related to the mail-in process, including lack of an appropriate postmark or late arrival due to postal backlogs and delays. By authorizing local Boards of Elections to establish secure absentee ballot - drop boxes, this bill would emulate the systems of other states that have successfully conducted vote-by-mail elections for years by providing voters a convenient alternative option to submit their ballots without having to rely on an overburdened postal service struggling to keep up with an unprecedented volume of ballot submissions.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New bill.   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: To be determined.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
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