Senate passes bill to reduce number of signatures needed to run for local office
Tuesday, February 12, 2019 - 4:58 pm

The State Senate has approved legislation that will reduce the number of petition signatures required for local candidates to qualify for the primary and general election ballots this year, said a press release from Senator Betty Little’s office.

Little, who represents the 45th state senate district which includes the towns of Parishville, Piercefield, Colton, Lawrence, Clare and Hopkinton, co-sponsored the measure.

The senator said the legislation is in response to concerns raised following the recent adoption of a law that moved New York State’s primary date from early September to the fourth week of June.

“Legislation approved a couple of weeks ago consolidates the federal, state and local election calendars,” said Little.

“In years past, a September primary date for state and local elections triggered the petition process to begin in June. This year, and going forward, the June primary will mean the petition process starts in late February. Requiring fewer signatures this year will help those running for local office adjust to this change.”

This bill temporarily reduces the number of signatures required for designating petitions by one-quarter for candidates running for office, with the exception of New York City in 2019 to allow candidates to organize their campaigns, print their petitions and begin collecting voters' signatures after the change in the primary date.

Companion legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Billy Jones, who represents the towns of Brasher, Lawrence, Hopkinton and Piercefield, passed the State Assembly on Jan. 28.