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Orleans sees jump in voter registrations

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 21 October 2016 at 2:17 pm
Photos by Tom Rivers: An Albion resident on East Avenue has a sign out in support for Donald Trump.

Photos by Tom Rivers: An Albion resident on East Avenue has a sign out in support for Donald Trump.

ALBION – The contentious race for U.S. president has resulted in a jump in voter registrations at the Board of Elections in Orleans County.

The BOE has registered 1,963 voters so far this year, bringing the county’s total roll to 23,262 eligible voters.

The increase of nearly 2,000 registered voters is about double the number from 2015 when the county added 1,089 registered voters. (In some cases, the registered voters are just changing addresses or may have a name change.)

About half of the new registered voters in Orleans were processed online through the state Department of Motor Vehicles.

The state Department of Motor Vehicle’s automated online system (click here) processed 214,356 online voter registration applications from October 1 to October 14, including 122,147 from first-time voters.

The number of applications received during those two weeks shattered the previous one month record of 140,602 applications, including 78,432 from first time voters in September.

This sign on Allen Road in Albion proclaims support for Hillary Clinton.

This sign on Allen Road in Albion proclaims support for Hillary Clinton.

“Our online voter registration system has broken down barriers and enabled hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers to participate in the electoral process,” Governor Cuomo said. “These new records demonstrate the ease and success of this system and I am proud these New Yorkers are ensuring their voices are heard.”

Since Governor Cuomo launched the online application system in 2012, the DMV website has processed 822,014 online voter registration applications, including 383,118 from first time voters.

The Orleans County BOE also needs to have enough ballots for the Nov. 8 election. Given the interest in the presidential race, the BOE is having enough ballots for 85 percent of the registered voters. That would be a big increase from the 70 percent that were available in 2012 during the Obama-Romney presidential race.

If the 85 percent isn’t enough, the BOE also has a stack of affidavit and other emergency ballots, said Eileen Aina, a deputy election commissioner.

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