[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Sullivan as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 3-5-2009 by L.L. No. 1-2009]
The people of the State of New York have in the New York State Constitution, Article IX, Section 2, delegated the responsibility to local governmental units to adopt regulations designed to promote the public health, safety, and the general welfare of its citizenry. More particularly, Municipal Home Rule Law of the State of New York at § 10 grants to local governments the power to adopt and amend local laws. Therefore, be it enacted by the Town Board of the Town of Sullivan, Madison County, New York, as follows:
This article shall apply to special Town elections for voting upon a proposition to establish or extend improvement districts pursuant to Town Law § 209 et seq., by owners of the taxable real property situate in the proposed district as shown upon the latest completed assessment roll of the Town of Sullivan within the jurisdiction of the Town of Sullivan, outside the Village of Chittenango.
The purpose and intent of this article is to facilitate citizen participation in the special Town elections described in the preceding § 30-2, consummate with good election practices and applicable law.
Absentee ballots shall be provided for special Town elections for voting upon a proposition to establish or extend improvement districts pursuant to Town Law § 209 et seq., by owners of the taxable real property situate in the proposed district as shown upon the latest completed assessment-roll of the Town of Sullivan.
A "qualified voter" or a person "qualified to vote" means a person who is entitled to vote as identified and/or specified in the rules of voting adopted by resolution of the Town Board prior to the date of the special Town election.
Request for absentee ballot.
An applicant for an absentee ballot shall request an absentee ballot providing:
His name and residence address;
That he is a qualified voter; and
That he will be unable to appear to vote in person on the day of the election for which the absentee ballot is requested because he is or will be on such day:
A patient in a hospital, or unable to appear personally at the polling place on such day because of illness or physical disability; or
Because his duties, occupation or business will prevent him from personally appearing at the polling place on such day; or
Because he will be on vacation outside of Madison County on such day; or
Unable to vote because he is detained in jail awaiting action by a grand jury or awaiting trial or is confined in prison after conviction for an offense other than a felony.
Such request must be received by the Town Clerk or her designee at least seven days before the election if the ballot is to be mailed to the voter, or the day before the election, if the ballot is to be delivered personally to the voter or his agent.
If the Town Clerk is satisfied that the applicant is qualified to vote at the special Town election and entitled to vote by absentee ballot, his name shall be placed upon a list, and the applicant shall be issued or mailed an absentee voter's ballot, and the Town Clerk or her designee shall make an appropriate entry on the list indicating that an absentee ballot has been applied for by, and issued to, the applicant.
Ballots for absentee voters shall be, as nearly as practicable, in the same form as those to be voted at the special Town election. On the back of such absentee ballots shall be printed the words "Official Ballot, Absentee Voter".
Form of absentee ballot.
The Town Clerk or her designee shall enclose each absentee voter's ballot in an envelope which shall be labeled:
On the reverse side of such envelope shall be printed the following statement:
The envelope shall be gummed, ready for sealing, and shall have printed thereon, on the side opposite the statement, instructions as to the duties of the voter after the marking of the ballot, which instructions shall include a specific direction stating that the envelope must reach the office of the Town Clerk or polling place not later than 3:00 p.m. on the day of the election in order that his vote may be canvassed.
A person who shall make any material false statement in the statement of absentee voter appearing on the reverse side of the envelope as provided in this subsection, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
The Town Clerk or her designee shall make a list of all persons to whom absentee voter's ballots shall have been issued and keep such list on file in her office where it shall be available for public inspection during regular office hours until the day of the election. Any qualified voter may, upon examination of such list, file a written challenge of the qualifications as a voter of any person whose name appears on such list, stating the reasons for such challenge. Such written challenge shall be transmitted by the Town Clerk to the inspectors of election on election day.
Such list shall also be posted in a conspicuous place or places during the election, and any qualified voter may challenge the acceptance of the absentee voter's ballot of any person on such list, by making his challenge and the reasons therefor known to the inspectors of election before the close of the polls.
The Town Clerk shall be authorized to call upon members of the police force for such assistance in the enforcement of the provisions of this article as she shall require, and such members of the police force shall be authorized to render such assistance.
No absentee voter's ballot shall be canvassed, unless it shall have been received in the office of the Town Clerk or at the polling place not later than 3:00 p.m. on the day of the election.
The Town Clerk shall, on the day of the election, transmit all absentee voters' envelopes, received by her in accordance with Subsection H, to the inspectors of election.
If, at the election, any absentee voters' envelopes shall have been received at the polling place, the inspectors of election immediately after the closing of the polls shall examine them, and shall compare the signature, if any, on each envelope with the signature, if any, on the register of the parcels of taxable real property, of the person of the same name owning the same taxable real property. If a person whose name is on an envelope as a voter shall have already voted in person at such special Town election, or if his name, as stated on the envelope, is not on the register of the parcels of taxable real property, or if there is no signature on the envelope, this envelope shall be laid aside unopened and be returned unopened to the Town Clerk. If such person is found to be on the register and has not so voted in person, and if no objection is made, or if an objection made is not sustained, the envelope shall be opened and the ballot withdrawn without unfolding and deposited in the proper box. At the time of the deposit of such ballot, the inspectors shall enter the words "absentee vote" at an appropriate place in the register.
During such examination any inspector of elections may object to the voting of the ballot contained in any envelope upon the ground that the person named thereon is not a qualified voter or was not entitle to cast an absentee ballot if he knows that the person named on such envelope is not qualified to vote, or was not entitled to cast an absentee ballot. The election inspectors shall forthwith proceed to determine each objection, including any written challenge transmitted to them by the Town Clerk as provided in Subsection E of this section. Unless the inspectors, by majority vote, shall sustain the objection, the Chairman, or if he refuses, another inspector shall endorse upon the envelope the objection and the words "not sustained," shall sign such endorsement, and shall open the envelope and deposit the ballot as provided in this section. Should the inspectors, by majority vote, sustain such objection, the objection and word "sustained" shall be similarly endorsed upon the envelope, the envelope shall not be opened nor the ballot therein canvassed, and such envelope shall be returned unopened to the Town Clerk. If the inspectors of election shall have received an envelope endorsed with the name of a person who to the knowledge of the inspectors is deceased on the day of the election, the inspectors shall return such envelope unopened to the Town Clerk with the words "deceased — objection sustained" endorsed on the envelope.
If the inspectors of election shall have received an envelope, and upon opening the same no ballot shall be found therein, the inspectors shall make a memorandum showing that the ballot is missing. When the casting of absentee voters' ballots shall have been completed, the inspectors shall ascertain the number of such ballots which have been deposited in a receptacle for holding the paper ballots by deducting from the number of envelopes opened, the number of missing ballots (the "absentee ballot box"), and shall make a separate return thereof in duplicate. The number of absentee voters' ballots deposited in the absentee ballot box shall be added to the number of other ballots deposited in the absentee ballot box in order to determine the number of all ballots to be accounted for in the absentee ballot box. Such ballots shall then be counted or canvassed by the inspectors of election along with the other ballots cast at such special election, or, where voting machines are used, shall be added to the votes recorded on such machines.
This article shall be construed so as to give it full force and effect and any ambiguity shall be construed so as to preserve the validity of this article. The invalidity of any provision of this article shall not affect the validity of any other provision of this article that can be given effect without such invalid provision.