Mayor signs into law bill aimed at easing voter registration woes

Mayor Bill de Blasio on Saturday, December 16 signed into law a new bill that allows for the creation of an online system to make voter registration easier for New York City residents.

Under this new legislation, both an online portal and mobile app will be created through which voters can submit their registration information or easily submit updates to previously existing registrations.

“We’re embracing technology to help make voting more accessible for New Yorkers. This bill is one step towards fixing our antiquated electoral system, which for far too long has discouraged participation in the democratic process,” said de Blasio. “For the first time ever, New Yorkers will be able to submit the necessary registration information or submit updates to their registration online or through a mobile app. Now it is time for Albany to follow our lead and pass meaningful electoral reform to expand access to voting.”

In addition, this new law requires the Campaign Finance Board (CFB) to provide voters with a mechanism for an electronic signature on the voter registration form. It would also allow the CFB to use signatures already provided to other city agencies, including IDNYC, if appropriate. After the voter submits the information online, CFB would then print the information onto a voter registration form with an electronically affixed signature and then deliver the printed document to the New York City Board of Elections.

The bill takes effect in 18 months.

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