You are reading

Gov. Hochul Signs Sen. Gianaris’ Voting Reform Bills Into Law

Early voting site (NYC BOE via Twitter)

Dec. 27, 2021 By Allie Griffin

Governor Kathy Hochul signed two bills into law last week that were sponsored by state Senator Michael Gianaris that aim to improve the voting system.

One bill requires absentee ballots to be counted by election night, while the other requires the state to increase the number of early voting sites in each county.

The latter aims to cut down the amount of time candidates and the public have to wait to know the results of elections — as more and more races have been called based on absentee votes during the pandemic.

For instance, many election results in the city were delayed this year because the New York City Board of Election only releases the tally of in-person votes — without absentees counted — on election night. In tight races, voters waited weeks until the final count was released and a winner could be determined.

Gianaris’s legislation would require local boards of election to count the absentee ballots as they come in, so the full — albeit unofficial — count is released on election night. It takes effect on Jan. 1, 2022.

“To increase faith in our democracy, people should be able to vote more easily and know election results in a timely manner,” Gianaris said in a statement. “That includes ensuring voters do not wait on lengthy lines to vote early, and requiring absentee ballots to be counted more expeditiously.”

His other bill requires local boards to open at least one early voting place for every 30,000 registered voters in each county. It would nearly double the number of early voting sites across the state and expand hours at each site.

The line of people waiting to vote at York College on the first day of Early Voting in October 2020 (Former Acting Queens Borough President Sharon Lee via Twitter)

The bill aims to cut back on lines outside early voting sites like those many voters experienced ahead of the November 2020 election. The legislation goes into effect on April 1, 2022.

Gianaris thanked Hochul for signing both bills into law.

email the author: news@queenspost.com
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

City hosting walking tours at the new Arverne East Nature Preserve in the Rockaways on Sunday

This Sunday, May 19, the city is conducting walking tours of the newly opened Arverne East Nature Preserve in the Rockaways to showcase the 35-acre beachfront jewel developed on a formerly vacant illegal dumping ground on Beach 44th Street in Edgemere.

The tours, hosted by the Department of City Planning (DCP), NYC Parks, and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), will allow participants to explore the preserve’s diverse ecosystem. The large preserve is a component of the upcoming Arverne East housing development, which, when completed, will be one of the most environmentally conscious developments in the United States, achieving net zero and eliminating the need for fossil fuels on-site.

QBP Richards, advocates rally to demand Mayor Adams restore funding to City’s libraries

May. 17, 2024 By Gabriele Holtermann

A rally was held at the Queens Public Library at Forest Hills on May 16, during which Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Queens Public Library President and CEO Dennis Walcott, union reps and library advocates called on Mayor Eric Adams to reverse the proposed $58.3 million budget cuts to the New York Public Library (NYPL), the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), and the Queens Public Library (QBL) for Fiscal Year 2025, which begins on July 1, 2024.

Queens elected officials secure $70 million from New York State Budget for school safety equipment in religious and independent schools

May. 17, 2024 By Anthony Medina

Religious and independent schools throughout the city will soon receive additional funding for school safety equipment, thanks to Assemblymember Andrew Hevesi and State Senator Michael Gianaris, who, after extensive advocacy efforts, successfully secured $70 million from the New York State Budget for 2024-25 for Non-Public School Safety Equipment (NPSE) grants.

Young man chased, punched out and robbed in Cambria Heights by gunman who remains at large: NYPD

Police from the 105th Precinct in Queens Village are looking for a gunman who chased his victim through Cambria Heights before beating and robbing him on the night of Wednesday, May 8.

A 22-year-old man was in front of a business establishment at 229-02 Linden Blvd. when he was approached by a stranger. Sensing danger, he took off running eastbound toward the Cross Island Parkway with his assailant in pursuit.