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Local legislators demand early voting in NYS budget

PRESS RELEASE


NEW YORK -- With less than an week until the New York State budget is finalized, 99 local legislators from across New York State sent a letter urging Governor Cuomo and the legislative leaders to prioritize early voting in the 2018-19 budget.
Early voting would allow eligible voters to cast ballots in-person days, sometimes weeks, before an election. Currently, 37 states already have some form of early voting, leaving New York as one of only 13 states without any means to vote early except via absentee ballot.

Background

In February, Governor Cuomo announced an historic 30-day amendment to his proposed budget that will provide approximately $7 million to New York counties to offer early voting. The budget is due April 1st and will be voted on at the end of this week.

A Siena Poll released in February shows that 67% of New Yorkers, including 60% of Upstate New Yorkers, 48% of Republicans, and 65% of suburban New Yorkers, support early voting. This percentage is up two points from January.

This year, Let NY Vote, formerly known as Easy Elections NY, formed as a statewide coalition of organizations & grassroots groups fighting to modernize New York's elections. The goal is to pass simple solutions in 2018 to improve our elections and remove barriers to registering and voting for all eligible New Yorkers.

The Let NY Vote coalition is made up of over thirty organizations, nonprofits, and labor unions, including Common Cause/NY, Public Citizen, New York State United Teachers, SEIU 32BJ, RWDSU, CWA District 1, as well as the statewide NAACP and the National Action Network, grassroots organizations, faith groups, civil liberties, reproductive and immigrant rights, criminal justice and re-entry groups, New American, and the LGBTQ community. A full list is available at www.letnyvote.org