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New Yorkers may get extra day to vote after Nov 6 due to Hurricane Sandy

Washington, Nov. 5 (ANI): Voters in some New York counties may get an extra day to cast their ballots if disruptions caused by Superstorm Sandy prevent citizens from turning up at the polls, a state official has said.

State board spokesman Thomas Connolly said that County election officials could ask the New York state Board of Elections to allow polls to reopen for another day if Tuesday’s turnout is less than 25 percent.

“To my knowledge this has never happened in New York,” Connolly said, adding: “Will the turnout be low? It’s hard to say-probably, it all depends if people have other priorities.”

According to CNN, the state board would consider the request and, if approved, a second day of voting would be scheduled within 20 days of Tuesday, he said.

Polls would be open for 11 hours on the second day, with only those who were eligible to vote on Tuesday allowed to cast ballots.

Nassau County Elections Commissioner William Biamonte expects a ‘significant drop off’ in the turnout of Long Island voters.

“A lot of people that are displaced … they’re worried about getting their lives back, and whether they’re going to go back to an area where they’ve lost power, or their home has been lost, rather than take care of what their immediate needs are, that’s a big question,” Biamonte said.

He said that weather forecasters are also predicting a storm on Tuesday, adding: “The weather is not going to be a friend on Tuesday. We’re going to get very cold weather with a nor’easter coming our way again on Wednesday.”

“Election officials relocated and consolidated 40 polling sites, while another 30 will be powered by portable generators”, he said.

According to the report, the New York City Board of Elections has decided to temporarily relocate or combine some polling locations across all five boroughs serving 143,000 voters because of damage from Sandy, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said. (ANI)