New York voters on Tuesday passed a $4.2 billion environmental bond bill that will be used to fund climate change mitigation, water quality and infrastructure projects in the whole state.
According to the State Board of Elections, 59% of New York voters — more than 3.3 million people — supported the bond law. More than a quarter of voters, or 1.6 million people, voted against the ballot proposal.
The bond law received more support than opposition in 42 New York counties. Nearly three-quarters of Tompkins County voters voted “yes,” the highest rate among upstate New York counties. There was strong support for the Bond Act in New York. In Manhattan, 80% voted for the proposal.
At least a plurality of voters in 20 counties – Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chenango, Delaware, Fulton, Genesee, Hamilton, Herkimer, Lewis, Livingston, Montgomery, Orleans, Schoharie, Schuyler, Steuben, Tioga, Wayne counties, Wyoming and Yates — opposed the bond law, according to election night results. Wyoming County had the highest percentage of voters (57%) who opposed the proposal.
Of the counties in the GLOW region, Livingston County received the most votes in favor of the proposal, but also the most votes against the law. No votes exceeded yes votes by 48% at $44.
The proposal was opposed by 52% of voters in Genesee and Orleans counties. In Genesee County, all 15 districts in the city of Batavia favored the proposal, but voters in 35 of the county’s other 37 districts rejected the proposal—some by a small number of voters. Voters in two of Lew Roy’s eight districts (District 4 and District 8) favored the proposal. .
One of the challenges was getting voters to return their ballot to vote on the proposal. Statewide, 12.11% of voters left it blank. This was driven by larger counties where more voters did not vote on the proposal.
In four counties — Brooklyn, Chenango, Nassau and Rockland — the percentage of voters who left it blank exceeded 20%. A quarter of voters in Chenango County did not vote on the proposal, the highest in the state.
Most counties, however, reported lower percentages of voters who left the proposal blank on their ballots. Yates County had the lowest rate (4.32%). Cayuga County had the fifth best percentage (5.03%) among the 62 counties.
Environmental groups have been pushing for passage of the $4.2 billion bond law, which includes $1.5 billion for climate change mitigation, $1.1 billion for restoration and flood risk reduction, $650 million for open space conservation and recreation, and $650 million for improving water quality and resilient infrastructure. .
Union-backed Climate Jobs NY welcomed the approval of the bond law.
“The Environmental Bond Act will accelerate the development of renewable energy and create tens of thousands of high-quality family jobs across New York, especially in communities of color on the front lines of climate breakdown,” the city said. coalition.
There was some opposition to the Bond Act. The state’s Conservative Party urged voters to reject the proposal because it would increase state debt.
But there was bipartisan support for the bond law, with Democratic Governor Kathy Hochul and Republican challenger Lee Zeldin voting to invest $4.2 billion in environmental projects.
Regional Editor Ben Beagle contributed to this report.
How Voters in the Four County Area Voted on the Environmental Bond Act:
GENESEE COUNTY: Yes, 8,977 votes (40.74%); No, 11,524 votes (52.3%); White, 1,533 votes (6.96%).
LIVINGSTON COUNTY: Yes, 10,789 votes (44.84%); No, 11,639 votes (48.37%); White, 1,633 votes (6.79%).
ORLÉANS COUNTY: Yes, 5,167 votes (37.94%); No, 7,119 votes (52.27); White, 1334 votes (9.79%).
WYOMING COUNTY: Yes, 4,933 votes (34.79); No, 8,184 (57.72%); White, 1,061 votes (7.48%).
NEW YORK STATE: Yes, 3,416,894 (59.28%); No, 1,654,091 (28.7%); White, 692,129 votes (12%).
SOURCE: New York State Board of Elections.
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