New York State Assemblywoman Sandy Galef (90th District) announced today that a new and improved absentee ballot application is available and can now be downloaded and printed from the board of elections website. Galef’s bill (A5276B/S2868B) simplifies the absentee ballot process by removing the requirement for certain information that is unnecessary. While the previous application for an absentee ballot was lengthy and required information from people that might be seen as intrusive, the new form is only one page and requires only the most critical information be given.
Another of Galef’s bills (A7347B/S4960B) which has also been signed into law will further ease the process of obtaining an absentee ballot. This new law, which goes into effect in 2011, will allow voters to request the application for an absentee ballot via fax or other written instrument.
“The old absentee ballot application was an invasion of privacy asking for information which was irrelevant to the voting process,” says Galef. “I am confident that the change in this form, as well as additional options available to request an application for next year’s elections, will bring a larger voter turnout. This will make the voting process more up to date and voter friendly.”
Because of the great detail the old absentee ballot application asked for, many felt uneasy providing so much of their information into public record. Unfortunately, this resulted in many people not voting at all. Galef feels that by removing many unnecessary questions, more people will be compelled to vote. Now that the new ballot application is completed, Galef would like to make people aware of the changes and urge everyone to vote, even if they are unable to be at voting booths on election days.
The new absentee ballot applications can be found online at