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Citizens Union is committed to work towards the necessary reforms of the government of New York City and State, and to the enfranchisement of all New Yorkers. We are currently focused on developing programs centered on civic education and the Census of 2020. Our organization is over 120 years old, and our work has been—and always will be—nonpartisan.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019
6:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Citizens Union Calls for Oversight of Board of Elections

Citizens Union, a leading good government group committed to fostering accountability, accessibility, and transparency in our government issues the following statement from Executive Director Betsy Gotbaum:

Reforms recently passed in Albany are an important first step to protecting and expanding New Yorkers’ right to vote, but they must be implemented carefully and in good faith. The New York State Board of Elections is correct in denying the New York City Board of Elections’ request to circumvent the process for approving touchscreen voting machines. It should follow the proper approval process and be thoroughly vetted.

CU Applauds Legislature for Funding Census Outreach

Read our statement from executive director Betsy Gotbaum:

There are a number of significant challenges that could result in an undercount of the 2020 census, particularly in states as diverse as New York. Billions of dollars for programs that provide food assistance to needy families, early childhood education to low-income children, and maintenance for the bridges and roads are tied to census data. Given whats at stake, $40 million for community based outreach represents an incredibly wise investment. We applaud and congratulate the Assembly and Senate for including this funding in their budgets and encourage the Governor to include census funding in the final budget.


Youth Voting and Engagement Coordinator Consultant Part Time

Citizens Union has announced its search for a Part-Time Coordinator to lead its new Civic Education and Engagement Project. The project’s mission is to bring together young people and education experts in a campaign to increase civic participation in voting and community involvement. The Coordinator will manage the project under the direction of the Director of Public Policy.

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The Cost of Progress for New York Voters

In 2018, Citizens Union commissioned a Policy Capstone Project from a team of graduate students at New York University’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service. The team looked at the cost of implementing early voting and electronic pollbooks and how much the state would save by consolidating the primary elections for federal and state offices. The Report finds that implementing early voting, electronic pollbooks and a combined primary would cost NYS $49.5M over ten years, and result in ongoing savings in small and rural counties. Citizens Union calls on Governor Cuomo and the legislature to include funding for early voting in the State budget.

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