State approves full funding for early voting

By on September 9, 2019

The New York State Division of Budget announced on August 29 that they are approving the State Board of Elections’ plan to distribute $10 million to county governments to support early voting implementation.

The SFY 2019-20 Budget allocated a total of $24.7 million for assistance with implementing a series of election law reforms, including early voting and authorization for counties to use e-poll book technology in the upcoming 2019 elections.

This funding is split between two pots of money: $14.7 million for capital equipment purchases, including e-poll books and specialized printers, and $10 million that was appropriated to reimburse local boards of elections for costs related to the implementation of early voting. The State Board of Elections submitted a reimbursement plan allocating the $10 million to counties across the state. Under the plan, Monroe County will be reimbursed $347,593, Orleans County $27,251, and Genesee County $34,216.

“There was never any question that the full $10 million to support early voting would be made available, and the full amount has been approved today,” said New York State Budget Director Robert F. Mujica, Jr. “We look forward to the expanded access to the polls that early voting will provide voters this fall.”

 “Voting is one of the most important rights and responsibilities of Americans, enabling citizens to have a voice in their government and engage in the democratic process of electing leaders,” said Stephen J. Acquario, Executive Director of the New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC).

“The election reforms passed by state lawmakers this year, including early voting, will provide greater access for New Yorkers as they head to the polls. As counties gear up to open early voting sites in just under 60 days, we are grateful to New York State and Budget Director Mujica for committing vital funding for early voting implementation costs. These state resources are necessary to ensure smooth and accessible elections in communities across the state,” said Acquario.

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