Officials are introducing voter-registration forms that for the first time will offer a clearly marked “No Party” box to check.

Tom Connolly, state elections board spokesman, cited complaints that the old forms were confusing. Critics said some voters who wanted to be unaligned, or independent, were fooled into joining the Independence Party. But Frank MacKay, the Suffolk and state Independence chairman, said his party supported and sought the change. While conceding that many did enroll in Independence by mistake, this swelled the required number of signatures on nominating petitions, creating a “logistical nightmare.”

“Anyone who thinks we are trying to inflate our numbers has never carried a petition,” he said.

The new forms also include two new lines created by the major parties to draw gubernatorial votes. One is the Women's Equality Party and the other, which appeared on the ballot as Stop Common Core, has been renamed Reform Party.