Monday, April 21, 2014

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Some Problems Reported At City Polling Sites

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As New Yorkers headed to the polls Tuesday, there were some reports of people running into problems once they arrived.

Complaints about the polling sites ranged from not opening on time to missing names on the ballot to broken machines.

One NY1 viewer in Red Hook emailed the station to say voting booths were out of order at P.S. 27, District 71 and that he was told to fill out a paper ballot.

"...I folded up my ballot and shoved it into a cardboard box that was barely held shut by masking tape," the email read. "It was a very unprofessional experience."

Another viewer in Manhattan reported confusion at the 54th election district. He said the "printed ballots taped to the wall prior to entering the machine were listed in one order, however, when you entered the booth, the candidates appear in a different order."

A third viewer from Jackson Heights, sent video earlier of confusion at his polling location because of a broken machine.

It wasn't bad news for everyone, though. A viewer named from Astoria emailed just to say her polling place was running smoothly.

There have been concerns about the old lever machines which are temporarily replacing the new optical scanners.

There were more than 5,000 of them used in the primaries.

"These are 50- and 60-year-old machines that already have a high break down rate when they were being used in the last decade so we want to tell people what their rights are if the machine is broken," said NYPIRG Staff Attorney Gene Russianoff.

"There's been a couple of poll sites throughout the city that opened a little bit later than we would want. It is unacceptable. We strive for 100 percent compliance with getting the polls open at six o'clock so that everybody can vote, but it does happen and will get to the bottom of that and make sure that it doesn't happen again when the runoff comes," said City Board of Elections Executive Director Michael Ryan.

A BOE spokesperson says they were able to get machines to all sites who reported not having them this morning. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP