New York City’s Noncitizen Voting Law

New York City implements bill for noncitizens to vote.

AP News

New York City implements bill for noncitizens to vote.

Sarah Richart, Reporter

A recent bill passed in New York allows some who are not US citizens to vote. Those eligible include noncitizens who are permanent residents of NYC for more than a month as well as foreigners who are authorized to work in the US. Undocumented immigrants are not eligible to vote. The rationale behind the bill is that people should have a say in their community and local government.

Former council member Ydanis Rodriguez asserts, “We build a stronger democracy when we include the voices of immigrants.” However, this bill remains controversial, many US citizens argue, “The council lacks the authority on its own to grant voting rights to non-citizens and should have first sought action by state lawmakers.”

The bill is expected to be implemented by July 2023, creating a process to allow noncitizens to register for voting. According to AP News, “New York City is the first major US city to grant widespread municipal voting rights to non citizens.” Over 800,000 people will benefit from this law.

It’s important to note that these voters will not be able to participate in national elections such as voting for president or for members of congress. However, they would have a vote in municipal elections in New York.