File #: Int 0508-2014    Version: Name: Online facilitation of voter registration.
Type: Introduction Status: Enacted (Mayor's Desk for Signature)
Committee: Committee on Governmental Operations
On agenda: 10/22/2014
Enactment date: Law number:
Title: A Local Law to amend the New York city charter, in relation to online facilitation of voter registration.
Sponsors: Ben Kallos, Antonio Reynoso, Donovan J. Richards, Daniel Dromm , Mark Levine, Helen K. Rosenthal, Stephen T. Levin, Brad S. Lander, Ydanis A. Rodriguez, Deborah L. Rose, Carlos Menchaca, Fernando Cabrera , Margaret S. Chin, Costa G. Constantinides, Corey D. Johnson, Peter A. Koo, Rory I. Lancman, Rosie Mendez, I. Daneek Miller, Julissa Ferreras-Copeland, Jumaane D. Williams, James G. Van Bramer, Rafael L. Espinal, Jr., Bill Perkins
Council Member Sponsors: 24
Summary: This bill requires the creation of a secure website and mobile application for the intake of voter registration applications online.
Attachments: 1. Summary of Int. No. 508-A, 2. Int. No. 508 - 10/22/14, 3. Committee Report 10/26/16, 4. Hearing Testimony 10/26/16, 5. Hearing Transcript 10/26/16, 6. Proposed Int. No. 508-A - 1/4/17, 7. Proposed Int. No. 508-A - 11/9/17, 8. Committee Report 11/14/17, 9. Hearing Transcript 11/14/17, 10. November 16, 2017 - Stated Meeting Agenda with Links to Files, 11. Fiscal Impact Statement, 12. Int. No. 508-A (FINAL)

Int. No. 508-A

 

By Council Members Kallos, Reynoso, Richards, Dromm, Levine, Rosenthal, Levin, Lander, Rodriguez, Rose, Menchaca, Cabrera, Chin, Constantinides, Johnson, Koo, Lancman, Mendez, Miller, Ferreras-Copeland, Williams, Van Bramer, Espinal and Perkins

 

A Local Law to amend the New York city charter, in relation to online facilitation of voter registration.

 

Be it enacted by the Council as follows:

Section 1. Chapter 46 of the New York city charter is amended by adding a new section 1057-f to read as follows:

§1057-f  Online voter registration. a. The campaign finance board shall provide a secure website and mobile application that allows any individual qualified to vote in the city of New York to confidentially submit to such board through such website and mobile application the information collected on a voter registration application form pursuant to section 5-210 of the election law for the purpose of registering to vote or updating such individual’s voter registration. Such website and mobile application shall allow such individual to electronically provide a signature of a quality and likeness comparable to a signature written with ink, consistent with subdivision c of this section. The website and mobile application shall also allow such individual to view the notices contained on or accompanying a printed voter registration application form. Upon receipt of such information and signature, the campaign finance board shall print such information onto a voter registration application form, electronically-affix such signature, and transmit such printed application to the New York city board of elections, consistent with section 5-210 of the election law, or transmit such information and signature though any other method consistent with section 5-210 of the election law.

b. Such website and mobile application shall also conspicuously set forth information concerning the timeframes and deadlines for applying to register to vote or updating registration, to assist such individual in ascertaining whether the registration or update will take effect for the next election. Such website and mobile application shall also conspicuously set forth information concerning how a voter may confirm their registration information. 

c. The website and mobile application provided pursuant to this section shall permit the submission of an individual’s signature through one or more methods determined by the campaign finance board to result in a signature of a quality and likeness comparable to a signature written with ink. Methods to be considered by the campaign finance board shall include, but not be limited to: (i) the uploading of an electronic file; and (ii) direct input through a touch or stylus interface. In addition to any other method or methods utilized pursuant to this subdivision, the campaign finance board may, with the consent of an individual, utilize a signature previously provided by such individual to an agency or pursuant to the New York city identity card program, established by section 3-115 of the administrative code, if such board determines that such signature otherwise meets the requirements of this section and may be used consistent with the applicable law governing the program for which the signature was provided.

d. To the extent practicable and consistent with the privacy of users, data security and applicable law, the campaign finance board shall make available to the public a web application program interface that permits programs approved by such board to directly transmit voter registration application form information to such board in a manner equivalent to the submission authorized by subdivision a of this section.

e. The campaign finance board shall transmit voter registration application forms completed pursuant to this section to the New York city board of elections within two weeks of receipt of complete information, including a signature provided in accordance with subdivision c, provided that if such information is received within two weeks before the last day for registration to vote in a citywide election, such completed forms shall be transmitted as soon as is practicable to the New York city board of elections and if such information is received within five days before the last day for registration to vote in a citywide election, such completed forms shall be transmitted to the New York city board of elections not later than five days after the date of acceptance. 

f. In implementing the provisions of this section, the campaign finance board may receive advice and assistance from the voter assistance advisory committee and the coordinator of voter assistance.  In addition, in implementing such provisions, such board may, with the consent of the mayor, receive advice and assistance from and delegate any powers and duties set forth in this section to any office of the mayor or agency the head of which is appointed by the mayor.

§ 2. Paragraph 6 of subdivision b of section 1054 of the New York city charter, is amended to read as follows:

6. prepare and publish reports, including, at the minimum, an annual report to be published no later than April thirtieth in each year, regarding voter registration and voter participation in New York City, and forward copies of such reports to the mayor, the council, the borough presidents, and all other public officials with responsibilities for policies, programs and appropriations related to voter registration and voter participation in New York City and to private entities that are currently or potentially involved in activities intended to increase voter registration and voting. Such annual report shall include, but not be limited to (a) a description of voter assistance activities and the effectiveness of those activities in increasing voter registration and voter participation; (b) the number of voter registration forms distributed by the programs related to voter assistance and voter participation, the manner in which those forms were distributed and the estimated number of persons registered through the activities of the programs, including the number of voter registration application forms received and transmitted to the New York city board of elections during the preceding calendar year pursuant to section 1057-f, both in total and disaggregated for the website and mobile application; (c) the number and characteristics of citizens registered and unregistered to vote during the previous primary, general and special elections and for the most recent time period for which such information is available; (d) the number and characteristics of citizens who voted during the previous primary, general and special elections; (e) a review and analysis of voter registration and voter participation processes in New York City during the previous year, including data on usage and visitation for the website and mobile application required pursuant to section 1057-f; (f) recommendations for increasing voter registration and voter participation; and (g) any other information or analysis the board deems necessary and appropriate; and

§ 3. Subdivision 2 of section 1057-a of the New York city charter, as amended by local law number 139 for the year 2016, is amended to read as follows:

2. Participating agencies shall provide and distribute voter registration forms to all persons together with written applications for services, renewal or recertification for services and change of  address relating  to  such  services,  in the same language as such application, renewal, recertification or change of address  form where  practicable; provided however that this section shall not apply to services that must be provided  to  prevent  actual or potential danger to life, health or safety of any individual or of the public. Participating agency staff shall provide   assistance in completing these distributed voter registration forms, and in cases in which such an agency would provide assistance with its own form, such agency shall provide the same degree of assistance with regard to the voter registration form as is provided with regard to the completion of its own form, if so requested. Participating agencies shall also include a voter registration form with any agency communication sent through the United States mail for the purpose of supplying clients with application, renewal or recertification for services and change of address relating to such services materials. Participating agencies shall also incorporate an opportunity to request a voter registration application into any application for services, renewal or recertification for services and change of address relating to such services provided on computer terminals, the World Wide Web or the Internet. Any person indicating that they wish to be sent a voter registration form, via computer terminals, the World Wide Web or the Internet shall be provided with a link to the website and mobile application required pursuant to section 1057-f and, at the person’s discretion, sent such a form by the participating agency, or directed to a bank on that system where such a form may be downloaded. Each participating agency shall also maintain on its website at least one link to the website and mobile application required pursuant to section 1057-f.

§ 4. This local law shall take effect 18 months after its enactment, provided, however, that the campaign finance board and any other affected city office or agency shall take such actions prior to such time as are necessary for timely implementation of this local law.

 

 

Dss/smd/bjr

LS 1195/2014

11/6/17  4:56PM