The 2023 election season is in full swing and we have everything you need to know to be able to cast your vote in this years New York State Primary Election, that is scheduled for Tuesday, June 27, 2023.

Primary elections are an important part of the electoral process in America and in many communities are a key step in getting to the general election in November. While we still have several months of political ads and signs ahead of us, the field of candidates are going to be narrowed down starting this week.

What Is A Primary Election?

According to BallotPedia, which is a digital encyclopedia of American politics, a Primary Election is an election that is used to either narrow the field of candidates for a given elective office or to determine the nominees for political parties in advance of a general election.

In states like New York, which has a closed primary system, many people can request to be nominated to represent a political party (like Democrat or Republican) in an election. Members of that party vote during the primary to select their candidate for the general election which happens in November.

In order to vote in a primary election in New York State, you have to be enrolled in a political party, and that party needs to have people looking to be nominated.

Tuesday after the 2nd Monday in November

So What's So Important About This Election?

There are several local offices that may be essentially decided in the Primary, since the are no other candidates running. The ones that seem most important this year are:

  • County Executive
  • County Legislator(s)
  • New York State Family Court Judge(s)
  • City of Buffalo Comptroller
  • City of Buffalo Common Councilmember(s)
  • City of Lackawanna Mayor

This, of course, is in addition to the a number of Town and Village offices that are up to be elected this year as well. Those include Town Supervisors, Town Councilmembers, Superintendent of Highways, Town Clerks, and Town Justices.

You can find a complete list of every office that's set to be elected in Erie County right here.

What Do You Need To Know For Primary Election Day

  • Primary Election Day is Tuesday, June 27, 2023.
  • Voting polls and locations all across New York State open at 6 a.m. and will stay open until 9 p.m.
  • The voting polls will allow everyone who is in line to vote at 9 p.m. and they will remain fully staffed until everyone has cast their vote
  • If you don't think you will have enough time to vote on election day because of work, New York State Law requires your employer to give you up to 2 hours of paid time off if you do not have “sufficient time to vote.”
  • It's too late to request a mail-in ballot, but if you already have one, you can drop it off at any voting location. You can also drop it off at your local Board of Elections office.
  • When you go vote, you have to vote at the polling place assigned to you. Because of the 2020 US Census, your voting location may have changed. If you don’t know where that is, you can check the NYS Elections Voter Lookup Tool right here.
  • If you live in Erie or Niagara County you can also check their local voter look-up tools here for Erie County and here for Niagara County. Other counties also may have a look-up tool, so you can check their websites
  • New York does NOT require a Voter ID to vote. You can just give your name and you can sign the voter check-in book. However your ID might may you check in faster, but it is NOT a requirement.
  • If you run into any issues while voting, you can immediately reach out to the local Board of Elections. You can reach the Erie County BOE at 716-858-8891, and the Niagara County BOE at 716-438-4041 or 716-438-4040.
  • Also, the Office of the New York Attorney General would also like to hear about any issues you run into, you can find their Election Hotline Tool here.

Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting.
–Franklin Delano Roosevelt

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