Early voting begins this weekend across New York: Here’s what you need to know

New York voters can go out and exercise their civic duty starting on Saturday when poll sites open across the state for early voting for the June 28th primary — the first of a summer double-feature election lineup.

New York state runs a closed primary system meaning only registered members whose party has a primary contest can cast a ballot. So all registered Democrats and Republicans can head to the polls. (In part of Staten Island, certain Conservative Party members also have a primary for county committee members, those are unpaid positions within the local party organization.)

At the top of the ballot, voters from both major parties will choose their nominees for governor and other statewide races.

But that’s not all. Here’s what you need to know to head confidently to the polls.

How do I know if I am registered to vote?

Confirm your voter registration by visiting the New York City Board of Elections here or the New York State Board of Elections here.

When does early voting begin?

Early voting begins on Saturday, June 18th through Sunday, June 26th. The hours vary based on the day you decide to vote. It’s important to check the schedule before heading out. The hours of early voting sites are posted on your local BOE website. New York City voters can find hours here.

How do I find my early voting site?

Only in New York City are voters assigned to a specific early voting site. Find your early voting location, your Primary Day poll site (which will likely be different) and your sample ballot at https://findmypollsite.vote.nyc/. This site will also show you your sample ballot.

If you live outside New York City, every other county offers their voters the option to cast their ballot at a vote center. Any New Yorker can find their early voting and poll site locations at https://voterlookup.elections.ny.gov/.

What answers will be on the ballot?

The Democrat and Republican gubernatorial candidates will be on the ballot. There is also a Democratic primary for lieutenant governor; the Republican candidate is running unopposed.

Assembly candidates who have primaries will also be on the ballot, along with certain judicial contests and party positions (eg county committee, district leader, etc.), depending on where you live.

Where can I find information about the candidates?

Check out this Democratic gubernatorial debate roundup to meet the candidates and hear about where they stand on key issues. The last Democratic debate was held on Thursday (check out highlights here). The Republican gubernatorial candidates also went head-to-head, more on that here. There was one debate among the Democrats running for lieutenant governor, which you can find here.

Check out this guide from The City to learn more about those judicial and party positions lower down on your ballot.

What if I can’t get to a poll site during early voting or on Primary Day? Can I apply for an absentee ballot?

Yes, if you apply in person at a BOE office. The last day to apply in person for an absentee ballot is June 27th, the day before Primary Day. Reminder, if you apply for an absentee ballot and change your mind and decide to go to a poll site, you will not be able to cast your ballot on a voting machine. Due to a change in state election law, a poll worker will give you an affidavit ballot to complete.

My absentee ballot just arrived. Do I really need to apply my own postage to mail it back?

And it is. You should apply one Forever stamp postage to your absentee ballot. However, if you prefer to save your stamps or just don’t have any, you can drop it off at any early voting site or at your local BOE office.

Wait, when do I vote in the congressional and state Senate primary election?

That is the second summer Primary Day scheduled for August 23rd. Early voting in those contests runs from August 13th through August 21st.

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