Senator John C. Liu, together with the Senate Majority Conference, passed major legislation that will build on the historic voting reforms passed under the Senate Democratic Majority during the 2019 Legislative Session. The bills passed today will expand voting rights in New York and empower more voters to get to the polls.
“Voting is everyone’s civic duty, and today we expand upon the progress we made last year in making voting easier and more accessible for New Yorkers. These common sense reforms will allow voters to readily exercise this fundamental freedom and participate in our democracy,” Senator Liu said.
“As public servants, it is our responsibility to empower more eligible New Yorkers to exercise their right to vote. The legislation we advanced builds on the historic progress we made last year in reforming our electoral system. I will continue my efforts to empower eligible New Yorkers to have their voices heard,” Senator Liu added.
The additional voting reforms passed by the Senate Democratic Majority includes:
· Automatic Voter Registration (AVR): This bill, S.6457B, sponsored by Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris, creates a system of automatic voter registration (AVR) within designated agency applications at the Departments of Health and Motor Vehicles.
· College or University Provided Polling Place: This bill, S.4378, sponsored by Senator Kevin Parker, provides that election districts shall not be drawn partly on or off a college campus. It also requires a polling location on the grounds of the college or university when there are 300 registered voters or more on the campus.
· Ensuring Access to Early Voting for New York’s Population Centers: This bill, S.6754A, sponsored by Senator Neil Breslin requires that in each county, the municipality with the largest population contain at least one early voting location.
· Voter Notifications: This bill, S.6805, sponsored by Senator Zellnor Myrie authorizes state and local transportation departments to provide important voting registration and Election Day information on message signs on highways.
· Early Voting on Long Island: This bill, S.6922, sponsored by Senator Anna Kaplan will require that each town and city on Long Island have at least one early voting polling location.
· High Population Early Voting Polls: This bill, S.6923A, sponsored by Senator Monica Martinez will require New York’s largest cities and towns to have at least one early voting polling site per 50 thousand registered voters.
· Accessible Early Voting: This bill, S.6925, Sponsored by Senator Alessandra Biaggi will require all medium-sized towns and cities to have at least one early voting polling location.
· Mobile Early Voting Locations: This bill, S.6926A, sponsored by Senator Rachel May will increase opportunities for early voting by providing counties, at local option, with the authority to allow early voting at portable polling locations.
· Exempting Schools From Early Voting Locations: This bill, S.6930 sponsored by Senator Liz Krueger will exempt school buildings from being used as early polling sites.
“I am proud to join my colleagues in the Senate Democratic Majority as we kick off the 2020 Legislative Session with major voting reforms and reaffirming our commitment to advancing New Yorkers’ rights,” concluded Senator Liu.
John C. Liu is a New York State Senator representing a broad area of northeast Queens.