Sen. Lynch Prata’s package of election legislation passes Senate
STATE HOUSE – Sen. Erin Lynch Prata’s (D-Dist. 31, Warwick, Cranston) package of legislation that aims to make election days in Rhode Island run more efficiently and smoother passed the Senate tonight. The three bills deal with primary officials, instruction on new voting machines, and election equipment availability.
“Efficient, seamless, and accessible elections are the bedrock of our democratic society and these bills will further improve the voting process for our state’s voters. We must adapt to changing times and new technologies to ensure our elections run as smooth as possible and these bills will accomplish this crucial goal,” said Senator Lynch Prata, Chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Judiciary.
The first bill (2017-S 0793A) that passed the Senate tonight would allow a person appointed as a primary official to be an employee of the United States, of this state, or of any city or town of this state. The bill is a response to lack of poll workers on primary election days.
The second bill (2017-S 0794) gives local boards discretion to designate times and places where optical scan voting equipment and sample ballots are exhibited for instructional purposes. This legislation is in response to confusion over how new voting machines operated during the last election cycle and hopes to rectify long wait times and confusion as a result of the new voting machines.
The third bill (2017-S 0802) requires that election supplies furnished by the Board of Elections would be delivered to or picked up by the proper officer as determined by the board no later than 12 p.m. on the day before the election in order to adequately set up and become acquainted with the election materials and equipment before election day.
All three bills now head to the House of Representatives for consideration.
For more information, contact:
Andrew Caruolo, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903