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Easier Access to Voting Adopted for General Election

August 26, 2020

Dear Friends,

On Monday Governor Cuomo issued executive orders to make it easier to vote safely in the 2020 General Election on November 3, 2020.  Coupled with legislation passed by the Legislature in July and signed by the Governor last week, voters can now plan for how they will cast their ballots.

Voters have three options for voting in the 2020 General Election:

  • Absentee ballot voting available to any voter by checking the “temporary illness” box on the absentee ballot application.

Absentee Ballot Application

  • Early voting in person at early voting locations is from Saturday, October 24 – Sunday, November 1, 2020.  Locations of early voting polling sites are being finalized and will be posted on the Board of Elections website.
  • Election Day in person voting on Tuesday, November 3. The polls will be open from 6:00 am - 9:00 pm.

Absentee ballots can be requested by mail, e-mail, fax or phone. For more information contact:

Westchester County Board of Elections
25 Quarropas Street
White Plains, NY 10601
(914) 995-5700
https://citizenparticipation.westchestergov.com

The state legislation signed by the Governor allows the temporary illness excuse to be used by all voters based on the Covid-19 pandemic. We have also changed the law to authorize the Board of Elections to mail out absentee ballots earlier to avoid possible postal delivery delays. In addition to being a co-sponsor of these measures, I have advocated for additional drop-off options to ensure the delivery of ballots without depending upon the USPS.

With concern about delays in the delivery of absentee ballots, drop-off options are increasingly important. Completed ballots can be delivered to the Westchester County Board of Elections in White Plains at any time up to November 3, 2020.  Absentee ballots can also be dropped off at any early voting location (October 24 - November 1) or at any polling site on Election Day November 3rd.

To provide clarity to voters regarding voting information, the Governor’s Executive Order directs that all county Boards of Elections send every registered voter a mailing containing dates, locations and hours of early voting locations, how to apply for and submit an absentee ballot, November 3rd voting information and how a voter can look up their registration status

If you have not registered to vote, it is not too late.  The last day to register to vote for the 2020 General Election is Oct. 9, 2020 in person or by postmark. Voter registration forms can also be found on the Board of Elections website.

Voter Registration Form - English
Voter Registration Form - Spanish

The Governor has also asked for each County Board of Elections to ascertain their staffing needs to conduct and count ballots for the November election by September 20 in order to facilitate staffing assistance where needed.

The Executive Order also directs the State Board of Elections to develop a uniform absentee ballot envelope that will reduce invalided ballots because of errors in signing and dating of the envelope used to return completed ballots.

I hope this information is helpful as you plan how you will vote in the 2020 General Election. Voting is very important, and Covid-19 presents new barriers to voting that can be overcome by planning early how you will vote.

We now have clear choices for casting our vote. If you would rather vote in person, early voting (Oct. 24 to Nov. 1) is often faster than in-person voting on election day. Check the Westchester county Board of Elections website for details on locations and hours.  Plan your vote now to make sure your vote is counted in November.

Warm Regards,

OTIS WINS RE-ELECTION
IN STATE ASSEMBLY RACE

Statement of Assemblyman Steve Otis
June 2, 2020

It has been six years since Eric Garner’s last words, “I can’t breathe.” traveled the world in what should have been a message to everyone about police procedures, race and the unnecessary use of force. Why was that lesson not learned by everyone, everywhere?

The pain our nation faces is compounded by the double standard carried out in this country today. Peaceful protesters were assaulted and tear-gassed this week. A few weeks ago openly armed protesters in Michigan were treated with respect.

It has been 29 years since Rodney King was beaten in Los Angeles.  I do believe many in law enforcement did learn from that lesson, but the difference between many and all is the difference between appropriate law enforcement and tragedy after tragedy across this country.

This moment in time cannot pass without action, not only to correct practices in law enforcement but also to respond to the unequal treatment based upon race that exists in education, health care, housing and our economy. In New York, state government will respond.

What we lack today is presidential leadership to calm and heal a nation in need of such a voice. Practically any president in any of our lifetimes would have risen to the occasion. At this time in history, it is up to each of us.

In his comments from the Black Lives Matter rally in Rye, Assemblyman Otis spoke of the reform legislation adopted in Albany last week and the importance of using this moment in our country’s history to bring positive change.  He spoke of the critical role that each individual has to play in seizing this moment to combat the racism that has prevented America from living up to its founding promise.

Statement of Steve Otis on his run for re-election to the NYS Assembly, District 91. April 9, 2020.

I am running for re-election on my record of solid performance and effectiveness as an Assemblyman delivering results in every aspect of the job.

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