December 27th, 2023

By Amanda Prestigiacomo


Governor Kathy Hochul (D-NY) is being heavily criticized for signing a bill that moves most local elections to even-numbered years, aligning with federal elections.

While Hochul argued the change is a step toward a “more inclusive democracy,” critics say the move “effectively ends local elections” in New York state, significantly shifting power over to Democrats.

The law amends “the town law, the village law, the county law, and the municipal home rule law,” to move many county and town elections outside of New York City to even-numbered years.

“By signing this legislation, we are taking a significant step towards expanding access to the ballot box and promoting a more inclusive democracy,” Hochul said. “This is a meaningful first step and I would support a constitutional amendment to align all election years, to save taxpayer dollars and avoid voter fatigue.”

Executive director of the New York State Association of Counties Stephen Acquario strongly disagrees, saying in a statement that Hochul is driving national divisiveness into local elections and “buying” important issues.

“At a time when we should be keeping the divisiveness at the federal and state levels out of our local communities, this bill does the opposite, burying the local issues that impact New Yorkers’ daily lives at the back of exceedingly long ballots,” Acquario said.

New York State Sen. Robert Ortt, a Republican, criticized Hochul over what he suggested was a Democrat power grab.

“With total disregard for bipartisan opposition to this proposal, Gov Hochul signed the bill that effectively ends local elections in New York,” he posted to X. “The touted benefits are a sham concocted to hide NYDem’s goal of expanding one-party control to every level of govt.”

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) similarly called the law a “shameful power grab” that “nationalizes local elections.”

Upstate New York radio host and journalist Bob Lonsberry remarked on Dec. 21, “Kathy Hochul will late tomorrow sign the bill that moves local New York elections to even years, obliterating news coverage of local issues and enabling the Democratic takeover of local elections and offices.”

“That’s how tyranny says, ‘Merry Christmas!’” he added.

“Leave it to the Empress Governor herself with a Friday evening news dump to sign a law moving local elections to even numbered years,” Alison Esposito, former NY lieutenant governor candidate, reacted. “This power grab by one-party rule will diminish the importance of local governments & community issues. We need more local control & less Hochul control.”


Read more in the Daily Wire here.