A carveout in the state’s criminal trespass laws allows sex offenders to enter a school for the specific purpose of voting, including school district votes and other government elections, where the school is the polling site.
The issue has jumped into the public’s consciousness as the result of outcry by some Republicans about conditional pardons recently issued by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo that could speed up the restoration of voting rights for sex offenders on parole.
“Registered sex offenders who have been released are allowed to vote,” Albany County Board of Elections Republican Commissioner Rachel Bledi said. “Obviously you have a problem when the polling place is at a school. … We’ve never really had this issue raised.”