Elections officials in Erie County are developing a plan to implement early voting. Earlier this year, the New York State legislature passed a series of voting reforms which included early voting and allowing the use of electronic poll books.
It falls on each of the local boards of election at the county level to work out the details. In Erie County, Democratic elections commissioner Jeremy Zellner and Republican elections commissioner Ralph Mohr are going through that process right now.
“These are major changes,” Zellner noted.
Here’s what they’ve decided so far. Early voting will open on October 26th. The polling sites will be open from noon until 5 p.m. on weekends and noon until 9 p.m. on weekdays. They have tenatively selected 37 early voting sites: 10 in the City of Buffalo and one in each of the county’s remaining towns and cities.
Election Day is November 5th.
By comparison, while there will be 10 sites in Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse will each only have one site, Zellner said.
“Our county has the most sites in the entire state of New York,” he added. “We’re going to be getting grants from the State of New York and be able to reap those benefits because of the work that we did.”
Zellner said Erie County is eligible for nearly $2 million in grant funding to pay for this. The final cost of implementing everything is still to be determined.
“I think that our grants could cover the lion’s share of what this cost will be,” he said, “depending on what you consider the cost will be. As far as I’m concerned, getting early voting is going to mandate us to have e-poll books, which to me is a cost of this. If we could get all of our electronic poll books covered across the state for the election, that would be a tremendous help to us.”
Elections officials are still deciding whether early voters will be required to cast their ballot at the polling place in their district or any location across the county.
Here is a list of the 37 tenative early voting sites in Erie County:
Erie County Board of Elections, 134 W Eagle St, Buffalo, NY 14202
N Buffalo Community Center, 203 Sanders Rd, Buffalo, NY 14216
The Belle Center, 104 Maryland St, Buffalo, NY 14201
Broadway Market, 999 Broadway, Buffalo, NY 14212
Hennepin Center, 24 Ludington St, Buffalo, NY 14206
Delavan Grider Community Center, 877 E Delavan Ave, Buffalo, NY 14215
Salvation Army West Side Community Center, 187 Grant Street, Buffalo, NY 14213
Northwest Buffalo Community Center, 155 Lawn Ave, Buffalo, NY 14207
Tosh Collins Community Center, 35 Cazenovia Street, Buffalo, NY 14210
Gloria J Parks Community Center, 3242 Main Street, Buffalo, NY 14214
Amherst – Harlem Road Community Center, 4255 Harlem Road, Amherst, NY 14226
Alden Village Hall, 13336 Main Street, Alden, NY 14004 (can use Town Hall as backup)
Aurora Senior Center, 101 King Street, East Aurora, NY 14052
Boston Town Hall, 8500 Boston State Road, Boston, NY 14025
Brant Town Hall, 1272 Brant North Collins Road, Brant, NY 14027
Cheektowaga- Leonard VFW Post 6251, 2450 Walden Ave, Cheektowaga, NY 14225
Clarence Town Hall, 1 Town Place, Clarence, NY 14031
Colden Town Hall, 8812 NY-240, Colden, NY 14033
Collins Town Hall, 14093 Mill Street, Collins, NY 14034
Concord Senior Center, 40 Commerce Drive, Springville, NY 14141
Elma Senior Center, 3007 Bowen Road, Elma, NY 14059
Eden Town Hall, 2795 E Church Street, Eden, NY 14057
Evans Town Hall, 8787 Erie Rd, Angola, NY 14006
Grand Island Town Hall, 2255 Baseline Road, Grand Island, NY 14072
Hamburg- Moose Lodge 992, 45 Church Street, Hamburg, NY 14075
Holland Community Center, 3 Legion Drive, Holland, NY 14080
Lancaster Town Hall, 21 Central Ave, Lancaster, NY 14086
Marilla Community Center, 1810 Two Rod Road, Marilla, NY 14102
Newstead- Akron Village Hall, 21 Main Street, Akron, NY 14001
North Collins Town Hall, 10571 Gowanda State Road, North Collins, NY 14111
Orchard Park Town Hall, 4295 S Buffalo Road, Orchard Park, NY 14127
Sardinia Town Hall, 12320 Savage Road, Sardinia, NY 14134
Tonawanda- Friendship Center, Creekside and Irvington Drive, Tonawanda, NY 14150
Wales Community Center, 12345 Big Tree Road, Wales Center, NY 14169
West Seneca Community Center, 1300 Union Road, West Seneca, NY 14224
Lackawanna Senior Citizens Center, 230 Martin Road, Lackawanna, NY 14218
Tonawanda City Hall, 200 Niagara Street, Tonawanda, NY 14150