News from the League of Women Voters, New York State
Bill Expanding Early Voting Poll Site Access Signed into Law
Governor Cuomo signed into law a bill to mandate county boards of election to have at least one early voting poll site in the county's largest municipality. The bill also increases the maximum mandated cap on early voting poll sites from 7 to 10.
Although the League supported this legislation we are working to determine the overall fiscal impact of this new policy. Currently 34 counties have only a single early voting poll site which is hosted at their county board of elections office or local county office. Nearly 50% of those sites are not in the largest municipality.
Further expanding and providing funding for early voting will be a major focus for our policy work in the coming year. The League will also be looking at the following election reforms:
• Improving operations of county and state boards of elections;
• Improving the timeliness and transparency of tabulating and reporting of election results to the public, including partisan and non-partisan observers in the process, and ensuring voters are given a chance to cure absentee ballot deficiencies so voter intent is protected;
• Improving early voting by reducing the maximum number of registered voters per early voting poll site and ensuring state funding for expanded site locations and hours;
• Codifying restoration of voting rights for people on parole;
• and second passage of constitutional amendments to allow for same day voter registration and no-excuse absentee voting.
In addition to election policy, the League will be working to ensure an open legislative session during the ongoing pandemic through comprehensive rules reforms that allow maximum public input and transparency. We will continue to advocate to reform the Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) and to streamline New York's complicated state court system. We will advocate for passage of Medical Aid in Dying and for greater funding for education and the state's new Independent Redistricting Commission. A full list of our legislative issues can be found in the League's 2021 Legislative Agenda.
Many are predicting that the Capitol will remain closed throughout the legislative session severely limiting our ability to impact the policy making process. Although we can conduct lobby meetings over Zoom, nothing beats the daily face-to-face interaction of advocating at the Capitol. This limited contact will likely result in the League narrowing our advocacy work to what we deem as the most essential policies for 2021.
LWVNYS Issues Joint Letter Calling on Governor to Release Funding for Independent Redistricting Commission
This week the League organized a joint letter urging Governor Cuomo to order the New York State Department of State to release the $750,000 in funds appropriated to the Independent Redistricting Commission so that they can begin their critical work soliciting public input to draft new state and congressional legislative lines.
The letter was co-signed by LatinoJustice PRLDEF, NALEO Educational Fund, The New York Immigration Coalition, Chinese-American Planning Council, Center for Law and Social Justice, Citizens Union, and Reinvent Albany. Our groups will continue to work in partnership until these funds have been released.
Save the Date!
LWVNYS Redistricting Campaign Kick Off
January 14th @ 6:30 pm
Join us on Thursday, January 14th at 6:30 pm for a member-wide webinar on our 2021 New York State Redistricting Campaign Kick-Off. The NYS League will be announcing our plans to help empower the public to participate in the state's new redistricting process by hosting educational forums and community stakeholder meetings, and monitoring the Commission's actions to ensure the greatest possible transparency, accountability, and public input.
Where the League of Women Voters of Tompkins County Stands
What Members Can Do As Individuals to Advocate
"Action is agitating, organizing, educating, pleading, and persuading." -- Carrie Chapman Catt
click here for more information
Where We Stand incorporates positions reached and actions taken by the League and serves as a foundation for the League's program implementation.
LWVNYS Legislative Agenda 2021
LWVUS Ipact on Issues 2020-2022
LWVNYS Legislative Agenda
* Election Law Reform
* Good Government Reform
* Natural Resources
* Judicial Issues
* State Finances and Education
* Social Welfare
* Women's Issues
2021 Legislative Agenda
Impact on Issues LWVNYS is a guide for League leaders on the LWVNYS public policy positions. Every two years, local Leagues participate in the LWVNYS program planning process by reviewing existing positions and making recommendations for the future. Member agreement on issues (consensus or concurrence) follows in depth study and is developed into the formal positions presented in this publication. These positions are the basis for action.) https://lwvnyonline.org/advocacy/impact/2018/Impact-on-Issues-2018F.pdf
Clearinghouse.lwv.org https://sites.google.com/a/leagueofwomenvoters.org/clearinghouse/ League studies from across the country (800 national, state, and local League documents). Find League policy, action issues very quickly!