Category: Elections Section

Attorney General James Announces Election Protection Hotline to Open During Early Voting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 25, 2019

NEW YORK – New York Attorney General Letitia James today announced that the Attorney General’s Office will make its Election Protection Hotline available to voters during New York’s first early voting period, beginning on October 26, and lasting until November 3. Voters that experience problems casting early ballots, can report issues to the Attorney General’s Office from 9:00 AM until 6:00 PM each day of the early voting period, by calling 800-771-7755 or emailing election.hotline@ag.ny.gov.

“Voting is one of our most basic democratic rights, so we must do everything in our power to protect that right,” said Attorney General James. “Early voting is a commonsense measure that will provide greater accessibility and convenience to New Yorkers across the state and ensure that they have ample time to cast their ballot and make their voices heard. We are opening our Election Protection Hotline every day of early voting to protect every New Yorkers’ fundamental right and ensure our first early vote is a successful one. I urge all New Yorkers to vote early.”

This election will offer New Yorkers their first opportunity to vote early. Starting tomorrow, Saturday, October 26 through Sunday, November 3, registered voters in New York will be able to cast a ballot in-person at certain designated poll sites.

Each county Board of Elections will make one or more sites available to registered voters to cast ballots early. Those poll sites will only open for certain hours each day. To find details about early voting poll sites and the hours that those poll sites will be open, New Yorkers can check the website of their county Board of Elections or check the VoteEarlyNY website.

Importantly, voters residing in New York City or in the counties of Westchester or Orange have been assigned particular early voting poll sites by their local Board of Elections. As a result, in order to cast an effective early vote, voters must vote at the particular polling site assigned to them. Voters in Albany County have also been assigned a particular polling site, but these voters have the option of casting a ballot at the Albany County Board of Elections office. Voters in every other county of the state have the benefit of voting early at any early voting poll site in their county.

Additionally, there are several other key changes in election law that were enacted this year, which will be in effect throughout New York State. Most importantly, registered voters who have moved from one county in New York to another county within the state may now cast a ballot — during early vote or on Election Day — at their new residence without resubmitting an entirely new registration form. This can be done by filing out an affidavit ballot at their new residence’s local poll site. Voters can contact their local Board of Elections if they need help locating their new polling site or reach out to the New York Attorney General’s Office by calling 800-771-7755 or emailing election.hotline@ag.ny.gov.

The New York Attorney General’s Office has operated the voter access hotline since November 2012. During previous elections, the office fielded hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of complaints from voters across the state, and worked with local election officials and others to address issues. In 2017, in part from information received from an Election Hotline, the Attorney General’s Office sued and secured a consent decree with the New York City Board of Elections regarding voter registration purges.

The Election Day Hotline is part of the New York Attorney General’s Office ongoing effort to reduce barriers to voting. Attorney General James reminds all registered voters that they have the right to accessible elections. In addition, all registered voters have the right to vote free from coercion or intimidation, whether by election officials or any other person.

The New York Attorney General’s Office will receive and respond to election complaints relating to any of the statutes that the office enforces. The Attorney General’s Election Day Hotline is being coordinated by Assistant Attorneys General Conor Duffy and Ajay Saini of the Civil Rights Bureau, which is led by Bureau Chief Jessica Clarke. The Chief Deputy Attorney General for the Social Justice Division is Meghan Faux.

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Early Voting in Erie County Starts Tomorrow & Sample Ballot

Polling places will be open from Noon to 6:00 PM on Saturdays/Sundays and Noon to 9:00 PM on weekdays. A few other changes:  Any voters in Erie and Niagara Counties can go to ANY polling place in their county to vote during early voting.  This time around voters will “sign in” via iPads instead of the paper books (Is this a good thing?).  The iPads will automatically update all records throughout the County that the person has already voted in real time.  This is supposed to stop people from voting twice. Editors Note: All computers can be hacked.  Is this really a good idea? What if the network goes down with all the shoddy internet service around here and people’s votes don’t get counted?      –JAP-

The list of polling places can be found HERE……..Here is a sample of your Fall Election 2019 Ballot

KM_C308-20191009225749

***The Newsteader does not endorse candidates***

 

 

Regarding Lack of Local Candidates

Lack of candidates once again provides disappointment for democracy in our Town. Election 2019 in the Town of Newstead has two Council seats up for vote. As usual, we’re offered very few choices. The last time I spoke of this was earlier in the year on the FaceBook page, “You Know You’re from Akron When”. Of course, when I brought up how disappointing it was that two incumbent Village Trustees, Michael Middaugh and Brian Perry, were running un-apposed, I was immediately kicked of the site. My post wasn’t mean, in fact it gave all do respect to the incumbents, but just raised the fact that democracy doesn’t work so well when people run un-opposed. I’ve recently been made aware of the two Democrats running for the Council seats in the fast approaching 2019 election. To say I’m disappointed is an understatement. One I’ve known for years, and have always had a good relationship with, but really, as a Councilman, I just don’t see it! As much as the Democratic Committee is not wholly to blame, there is the fact that people just don’t want to run. It’s pretty much the attitude of let someone else do the work. In fact, when I ran for Councilman in 2017, I heard many times “better you than me”. This is the kind of attitude that doesn’t help our country. As for our local Democratic committee, I feel it needs a spark to get people interested in actually going to the meetings AND participating in the process. As a person, I like Justin Rooney, but as the Newstead Democratic Committee chairman, I think his time has come.  We need renewed energy for people to be interested. And again, this would not only help the Democratic party, but the entire election process, because limited choices is just not good for democracy in general.

Regardless of the choices though, you do have them. Make the most of asking either the incumbents, or the council-elect participants just what can they do for our community. Too many times they just skate by with no real accountability to our concerns! We should be asking them how they plan on improving our quality of life, like having better and more affordable internet service, or cellular service. The idea of driving down Theodore Road in Golden Pond Estates, and having my calls drop, every time, is unacceptable in this day and age.  And what can we do about renewable energy? Some neighboring towns, such as Amherst, have launched “solarize campaigns”. Back in 2017, Amherst officials launched such a campaign to provide residents and businesses with more affordable solar energy and solar panels.  We should also be asking how they plan on supporting our local fire companies, as the Village and Town are chief funding sources for both departments. And then there’s the question of recreation facilities. I seemed to remember hearing over the years about a dog park, and even a splash park. What happened to these ideas?

The point being, ask questions…make your current elected officials, or those running for office accountable!

-Peter Henley-

Editor’s Note: A List of candidates has been received and will be published shorty -JAP-