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October 8th, 2008

Review of Board of Elections statewide

Thomas DiNapoli

State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli announced that his office is reviewing boards of elections around the state to determine if they are prepared to handle the high voter turn out expected for the November election.

"The oxygen of democracy is participation," DiNapoli said. "But voters can’t participate if the lines are too long or the voting machines don’t work. There’s a lot of excitement surrounding this year’s presidential election. Turnout will be high, and polling places should be ready. Our review will make sure they are. Every registered voter should have a chance to cast their vote and know their vote will count."

The review will examine whether boards of elections are in compliance with election law, have adequate staffing and appropriate training, and have properly tested voting machines. Auditors will look at local boards’ contingency plans for machine breakdown, as well as the accessibility of polling places for disabled voters. DiNapoli added his review will look at a sample of election boards of various sizes.

The review is already underway and is expected to be completed before the election.

List of Entities Being Reviewed: Albany, Brooklyn, Broome, Erie, Fulton, Greene, Lewis, Manhattan, Monroe, Nassau, Onondaga, Putnam, Rensselaer, Schoharie, Schuyler, Suffolk, Westchester and Wyoming.

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