Curran Co-sponsors Bill That Cuts Costs For Local Elections

New legislation allows lever voting machines for village-run elections
February 22, 2011

Last week, Assemblyman Brian Curran (Lynbrook – 14th A.D.) co-sponsored Assembly Bill 3093, which allows villages that administer their own elections to use lever voting machines in those elections if they so choose.

The bill passed in the Assembly 145-0 and the Senate 55-5, and has been sent to Governor Cuomo to be signed. The bill extends through December 31, 2012.

“This bill was passed with bipartisan support and it will truly assist villages that are in poor financial situations,” said Curran.

In recent years, the state legislature enacted several provisions to ensure compliance with the federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA), which has resulted in a serious problem for villages. Most villages cannot afford to purchase their own new HAVA-compliant voting devices. This leaves them with three options: if they can afford it, they can rent the use of the new devices from their county board of elections. However, many counties have refused to allow villages to use the new scanner voting machines, forcing villages to hand count ballots – an expensive and time-consuming exercise. The final option would have been to potentially force county board of elections to conduct the village election.

“This bill provides villages with an opportunity to lower their cost of running elections, while giving them more choice in how they are conducted. I am pleased that I had the chance to co-sponsor legislation that will give more freedom to local villages,” said Curran.