Bill Text: NY S00308 | 2019-2020 | General Assembly | Introduced


Bill Title: Enacts the "restore faith in voting act"; relates to requiring the purchase of direct recording electronic machines which produce and retain a voter verified permanent paper record in the city of New York (Part A); relates to mandatory core curriculum and to mandatory training curriculum for election commissioners, key staff of boards of elections and poll workers (Part B); and relates to establishing mobile operations voting equipment units (Part C).

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-01-09 - REFERRED TO ELECTIONS [S00308 Detail]

Download: New_York-2019-S00308-Introduced.html


                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
                                           308
                               2019-2020 Regular Sessions
                    IN SENATE
                                       (Prefiled)
                                     January 9, 2019
                                       ___________
        Introduced  by  Sen.  FELDER -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
          printed to be committed to the Committee on Elections
        AN ACT to amend the election law, in relation to requiring the  purchase
          of  direct  recording  electronic  machines which produce and retain a
          voter verified permanent paper record in the city of  New  York  (Part
          A);  to  amend the election law, in relation to mandatory core curric-
          ulum; and to amend the election law, in relation to mandatory training
          curriculum  for  election  commissioners,  key  staff  of  boards   of
          elections and poll workers (Part B); and to amend the election law, in
          relation  to  establishing  mobile  operations  voting equipment units
          (Part C)
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section  1.  This  act enacts into law major components of legislation
     2  which are necessary to enact the  restore  faith  in  voting  act.  Each
     3  component  is  wholly  contained  within  a  Part  identified as Parts A
     4  through C. The effective date for each  particular  provision  contained
     5  within  such  Part  is  set  forth in the last section of such Part. Any
     6  provision in any section contained within a Part, including  the  effec-
     7  tive date of the Part, which makes reference to a section "of this act",
     8  when  used in connection with that particular component, shall be deemed
     9  to mean and refer to the corresponding section of the Part in  which  it
    10  is found. Section four of this act sets forth the general effective date
    11  of this act.
    12    §  2.  Short  title.  This  act shall be known and may be cited as the
    13  "restore faith in voting act".
    14                                   PART A
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD02815-01-9

        S. 308                              2
     1    Section 1. Subdivision 1 of section 7-200  of  the  election  law,  as
     2  amended  by  chapter  181  of  the  laws  of 2005, is amended to read as
     3  follows:
     4    1.  [The  board of elections of the city of New York and other county]
     5  County boards of elections may adopt  any  kind  of  voting  machine  or
     6  system approved by the state board of elections, or the use of which has
     7  been  specifically  authorized by law, and the board of elections of the
     8  city of New York shall adopt any direct  recording  electronic  machines
     9  which  produce  and  retain  a  voter  verified  permanent  paper record
    10  approved by the state board of  elections;  and  thereupon  such  voting
    11  machine  or system may be used at any or all elections and shall be used
    12  at all general or special elections held by such boards  in  such  city,
    13  town  or  village and in every contested primary election in the city of
    14  New York and in every contested primary election outside the city of New
    15  York in which there are one thousand or more enrolled  voters  qualified
    16  to  vote.  No  more  than two types of voting machines or systems may be
    17  used by any local board of elections at a single election.  On or before
    18  January first, two thousand twenty, the state board of  elections  shall
    19  approve  direct recording electronic machines which produce and retain a
    20  voter verified permanent paper record for the initial adoption  of  such
    21  machines  by  the  board  of elections of the city of New York. Notwith-
    22  standing the other provisions of this subdivision, any  local  board  of
    23  elections  may  borrow  or  lease for use on an experimental basis for a
    24  period of not more than one year each, voting machines or systems of any
    25  type approved by the state board of elections.
    26    § 2. Subdivision 4 of section 7-202 of the election law, as  added  by
    27  chapter 181 of the laws of 2005, is amended to read as follows:
    28    4.  Local boards of elections which obtain voting machines pursuant to
    29  this chapter may  determine  to  purchase  direct  recording  electronic
    30  machines  or  optical scan machines in conformance with the requirements
    31  of this chapter; provided, however, the board of elections of  the  city
    32  of  New  York  shall purchase direct recording electronic machines which
    33  produce and retain a voter verified permanent paper record  in  conform-
    34  ance  with  the  requirements  of  this  chapter.  The  initial costs of
    35  purchasing such direct recording electronic machines necessary to  bring
    36  the  board  of  elections  of  the city of New York into compliance with
    37  subdivision one of section 7-200 of this title, as amended by a  chapter
    38  of the laws of two thousand nineteen, shall be borne by the state.
    39    § 3. Subdivision 3 of section 7-203 of the election law, as amended by
    40  chapter 180 of the laws of 2005, is amended to read as follows:
    41    3.  In  the event that the board of elections shall not agree upon, or
    42  the county shall not execute a contract or contracts  for  the  purchase
    43  of,  the  necessary voting machines, such contract or contracts shall be
    44  awarded, made and executed by the state board of elections,  in  accord-
    45  ance with subdivision four of section 3-100 of this chapter, on approval
    46  of  the  attorney general as to form. The expense of making and entering
    47  into such contracts, including the preparation and printing of  specifi-
    48  cations,  and  also  all  payments for voting machines to be made there-
    49  under, shall be chargeable to the county, except in the city of New York
    50  where such expense shall be chargeable to such city, and it shall be the
    51  duty of the comptroller or other chief fiscal officer of the  county  or
    52  city,  as  the  case may be, to pay the same upon the certificate of the
    53  officer making such contract, or upon the certificate of the state board
    54  of elections in the event that such contract be made  by  it;  provided,
    55  however,  if such contract is for the initial purchase of direct record-
    56  ing electronic machines which produce and retain a voter verified perma-

        S. 308                              3
     1  nent paper record to bring the board of elections of  the  city  of  New
     2  York  into  compliance  with  subdivision  one  of section 7-200 of this
     3  title, as amended by a chapter of the laws  of  two  thousand  nineteen,
     4  such  expenses  shall be borne by the state. No provision of any charter
     5  or other law or ordinance governing the purchase  of  patented  articles
     6  shall  be deemed to apply to the purchase of voting machines pursuant to
     7  the provisions of  this  section.  Nothing  in  this  section  shall  be
     8  construed  to  prevent  the  state  board of elections from distributing
     9  voting machines to boards of elections pursuant to other  provisions  of
    10  this chapter without charge.
    11    § 4. This act shall take effect immediately.
    12                                   PART B
    13    Section  1.  Subdivision  1-a of section 3-412 of the election law, as
    14  added by chapter 181 of the laws of 2005, is amended to read as follows:
    15    1-a. The state board of elections shall  establish  a  mandatory  core
    16  curriculum  for  poll worker training which includes the requirements in
    17  subdivision two of this section, [as amended by a chapter of the laws of
    18  2005,] and the rights of voters at the polls and obligation of  election
    19  workers  to  protect those rights while maintaining the integrity of the
    20  franchise, including [assisting] accommodating voters with  disabilities
    21  or  with  limited  or  no proficiency in the English language, handling,
    22  processing and entitlement to ballots, including affidavit and emergency
    23  ballots, proper identification requirements, procedures to  be  followed
    24  with  respect  to  voters  whose names are not on the list of registered
    25  voters or whose identities have not been  verified,  electioneering  and
    26  other  violations  of the elective franchise as defined in this chapter,
    27  solicitation by individuals and groups at the polling place  and  proce-
    28  dures  to  be followed after the polls close.  Such core curriculum also
    29  shall include specific  training  in  the  proper  operation  of  voting
    30  systems  used  in  the  election; procedures for expeditiously providing
    31  directions to voters about their assigned  election  district;  ensuring
    32  polling  sites  are  accessible  to  voters  with  disabilities or other
    33  specific needs; providing accommodation to persons who  are  illiterate;
    34  the  requirements  for  conducting signature verification of voters; the
    35  requirements for individuals seeking to challenge voter eligibility  and
    36  the  process  for  handling any such challenges; and security procedures
    37  for the election. Each board of elections shall augment the core curric-
    38  ulum with local procedures not inconsistent  with  the  core  curriculum
    39  adopted  by  the  state board of elections and which includes procedures
    40  relating to proper operation of, and remedying problems with, the voting
    41  machine or system in use in that jurisdiction.  Each board of  elections
    42  shall  also develop and implement procedures to assist in the recruiting
    43  of new poll workers.
    44    § 2. The election law is amended by adding a new section 3-213 to read
    45  as follows:
    46    § 3-213.  Boards  of  elections;  mandatory  training  curriculum.  1.
    47  Election  commissioners  and  such other board of elections employees as
    48  determined by the state board of elections shall within six months after
    49  their first appointment complete a course of instruction on  the  opera-
    50  tion  of a board of elections which shall be provided by the state board
    51  of elections. The curriculum shall be established by the state board  of
    52  elections  in  consultation  with  election  commissioners and shall not
    53  exceed thirty hours of instruction.

        S. 308                              4
     1    2. Annually, election  commissioners  and  other  board  of  elections
     2  employees  as determined by the state board of elections, shall complete
     3  before June first a continuing course of instruction on the operation of
     4  a board of elections which shall be  provided  by  the  state  board  of
     5  elections.  The  curriculum  shall  be established by the state board of
     6  elections in consultation with the election commissioners and shall  not
     7  exceed three hours of instruction.
     8    3. The state board of elections shall provide the training required by
     9  subdivision two of this section through, in addition to other methods it
    10  may choose, a web-based recorded format.
    11    4.  Upon  the  failure of a commissioner or other employee to complete
    12  the instruction within the time required  by  this  section,  the  state
    13  board of elections shall send a letter to the county legislature or city
    14  council and the respective county party chair of the jurisdiction of the
    15  commissioner stating the delinquency.
    16    §  3. Section 3-412 of the election law is amended by adding three new
    17  subdivisions 1-b, 1-c and 1-d to read as follows:
    18    1-b. The state board of elections shall establish and host  an  educa-
    19  tion  and training institute which shall be responsible for the develop-
    20  ment and implementation of  a  statewide  program  wherein  persons  can
    21  become  certified poll worker trainers. This institute shall also create
    22  a train-the-trainer program, in order for county boards of elections  to
    23  implement  an effective training program at their respective local level
    24  of program delivery.  The state board's trainers shall  include  in  the
    25  trainer curriculum to be developed, attention to, inter alia, poll work-
    26  er  ability  to  serve a diverse electorate with complete confidence and
    27  respect; professionalizing the delivery of all  election  day  services;
    28  providing  assistance to voters with disabilities and those with limited
    29  English language proficiency, ensuring the dignity and privacy  of  such
    30  individuals;  and  to  individuals  who  are members of racial or ethnic
    31  minorities, complete familiarity and comfort with all voting systems  in
    32  use   in   poll   sites,  including  ballot  marking  devices  or  other
    33  systems/services available to voters with disabilities; and poll  worker
    34  ability  to recognize and resolve a variety of issues which may arise in
    35  poll sites. The state board's trainers and  all  certified  poll  worker
    36  instructors  shall  utilize industry-proven training techniques aimed at
    37  adult learners  including  role-based  training  and  hands-on  training
    38  opportunities  using  official  election  day forms and poll site voting
    39  systems and may further include  a  web-based  component  and  companion
    40  video.
    41    1-c.  County boards shall enroll trainers in the program in such quan-
    42  tities to ensure that an adequate contingent of fully trained and certi-
    43  fied poll worker trainers are available to meet the  training  needs  of
    44  such  county.  Each county board of elections shall enroll not less than
    45  two persons designated by the county board on a bipartisan basis, in the
    46  state board of elections training  institute.  Certified  trainers  must
    47  maintain  their  certification  by  attending  once  every  two years, a
    48  continuing education program, to ensure the professionalism of the  poll
    49  worker  training  agenda  set by the state board of elections. Enrollees
    50  who have successfully completed the state board's training  program  and
    51  been  awarded a "certified poll worker instructor" certificate may serve
    52  at the county board as a trainer of poll workers as well as a trainer of
    53  other bi-partisan designees of the county board, however the  conferring
    54  of  the title "certified poll worker instructor" may be made only by the
    55  state board of elections.

        S. 308                              5
     1    1-d. The state board of elections shall adopt  such  rules  and  regu-
     2  lations  which  may  be  necessary  to create the training institute and
     3  associated curricula provided for in subdivisions one-a, one-b and one-c
     4  of this section, including a process whereby attendees who  successfully
     5  complete  a  state  board-sponsored  training program shall be awarded a
     6  certificate conferring upon him or her, the  title  of  "certified  poll
     7  worker instructor".
     8    §  4.  This act shall take effect immediately; provided, however, that
     9  sections two and three of this act shall take effect on the one  hundred
    10  eightieth  day after it shall have become a law; provided, however, that
    11  effective immediately, the addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule
    12  or regulation necessary for the implementation of this act on its effec-
    13  tive date are authorized and directed to be made  and  completed  on  or
    14  before such effective date.
    15                                   PART C
    16    Section  1.  Section  3-302 of the election law is amended by adding a
    17  new subdivision 8 to read as follows:
    18    8. On or before January first,  two  thousand  twenty,  the  board  of
    19  elections  shall establish a mobile operations voting equipment unit for
    20  every one hundred polling places within such board's jurisdiction.  Each
    21  mobile  operations  voting  equipment  unit  shall  include at least two
    22  voting machine technicians with the proper training and education on the
    23  preparation, use, maintenance and repair of voting machines as  required
    24  by  this section. Appointments of voting machine technicians to a mobile
    25  operations voting equipment unit shall be equally  divided  between  the
    26  major  political parties. Such technicians shall be deployed on election
    27  day by the board of elections  to  any  polling  place  where  a  voting
    28  machine  is  reported as malfunctioning or inoperable for inspection and
    29  repair of such machine.
    30    § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.
    31    § 3. Severability clause. If any clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivi-
    32  sion, section or part of this act shall be  adjudged  by  any  court  of
    33  competent  jurisdiction  to be invalid, such judgement shall not affect,
    34  impair, or invalidate the remainder thereof, but shall  be  confined  in
    35  its  operation  to the clause, sentence, paragraph, subdivision, section
    36  or part thereof directly involved  in  the  controversy  in  which  such
    37  judgement  shall  have  been  rendered.  It is hereby declared to be the
    38  intent of the legislature that this act would have been enacted even  if
    39  such invalid provisions had not been included herein.
    40    §  4.  This  act shall take effect immediately provided, however, that
    41  the applicable effective date of Parts A through C of this act shall  be
    42  as specifically set forth in the last section of such Parts.
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