District Explains Absentee Ballot Procedures and Confidentiality for June 9, 2020 School Budget and BOE Member Voting
As many already are aware, Governor Cuomo, in a prior Executive Order this Spring related to the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent NY Pause initiative, has directed that this year’s school budget and BOE member voting be conducted entirely via absentee ballot. Ballots have been mailed to all registered school district voters and are required to be returned to the school district via US mail no later than 5:00 pm on Tuesday, June 9, 2020.
This radical change in the typical school voting procedure has raised concerns for some voters regarding the counting of the absentee ballots and whether the way voters have voted will be known to those election tellers who will be opening the absentee ballot envelopes and counting the votes on the evening of Tuesday, June 9, 2020.
In order to respond to this concern, voters should be aware that the absentee ballot oath envelopes will be opened, after which the folded ballot will be separated from its oath envelope. The folded ballots will be placed in a pile and then opened and counted after all of the ballots have been separated from their oath envelopes. There will be no way for the election tellers to know which ballot has been removed from which oath envelope.
In addition, the separation of the folded absentee ballots from their oath envelopes, as well as the random counting of the absentee ballots after that, will be live streamed via Zoom so that anyone who is so inclined and interested can watch the process in order to verify that the election tellers haven’t looked at the absentee ballots until after they have been removed from their oath envelopes and have been randomly counted. More information on the live streaming will be included on the District website as it becomes available prior to June 9, 2020.