ALBANY — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Monday ordered state agencies to help register more voters and for public colleges to motivate more students to vote.
Voter registration forms will be available at all agencies under the directive, not just at the Department of Motor Vehicles and social services, to draw the interest of licensed professionals, including lawyers and teachers. State workers will be trained to help New Yorkers register to vote.
Cuomo’s order also directs public colleges to investigate whether students are receiving voter registration forms each year as required by law and to explore ways to increase voter turnout.
”As the federal government and foreign powers threaten the sanctity of America’s democracy, I am exercising my executive power to expand the availability and opportunity for every New Yorker to register to vote,” Cuomo said.
The order, however, is considered too little by some.
“While we appreciate Governor Cuomo’s intentions, his proposed executive order will do little to address the issues New York State voters face,” said Jennifer Wilson of the state League of Women Voters. “Voter purges, strict registration and party change deadlines, and long lines at the polls cannot be fixed with enhanced voter registration.
“We would prefer to see an executive order that enacts early voting, alters registration deadlines or allows for electronic poll books,” she said.
The action comes after Russia was accused of meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Cuomo, along with many other Democratic governors, also refused to provide information on voter registration sought by Republican President Donald Trump.