V. Legislative Updates
California: Lawmakers have approved Assembly Bill 606 which would allow election officials to print only summaries of ballot measures in statewide voter guides. The bill requires the secretary of state to make clear in future voter guides the Internet address where voters can find the full text of ballot measures. Voters would also be given the option of calling a toll-free number to request a full guide of the legal language.
Also in California, a group of youth commissioners from several cities in the Bay Area traveled to Sacramento to lobby on behalf of ACA 10 which would lower the state’s voting age to 17. According to Assemblyman Evan Low (D-28th District) the legislation he introduced has bipartisan support.
Maryland: Voters in Greenbelt will decide whether or not to allow 16- and 17-year-olds to vote in local elections. The city’s Youth Advisory Committee put the proposal forward in 2015 and after two years of work, it was struck down by a 4-3 vote of the city council. Instead the proposal will appear on the November 7 ballot.
Also in Maryland, the College Park City council voted 4-3 to allow noncitizens to vote in local elections. The new ordinance will allow all undocumented immigrants, student-visa holders and residents with green cards to vote in city elections. About 20 percent of College Park’s 32,275 residents are foreign-born, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. The University of Maryland campus, with more than 27,000 undergraduates, has about 3,600 international students.
New York: Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has signed a bill into law that will allow election inspectors to work a split shift. The new law permits Boards of Election to divide the shift, thereby eliminating a major obstacle to election inspector recruitment and retention. The payment for each worker would be adjusted accordingly.