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Chapter 46, §1053: Voter guide

a. For all elections in which there are contested elections for the offices of mayor, public advocate, borough presidents, comptroller, or city council or ballot proposals or referenda pursuant to this charter or the municipal home rule law, each printed voter guide published by the board shall contain:

1. material explaining the date and hours during which the polls will be open for that election; when, where, and how to register to vote; when a citizen is required to reregister; when, where, and how absentee ballots are obtained and used; instructions on how to vote; information on the political subdivisions applicable to a particular citizen’s address; and any other general information on voting deemed by the board to be necessary or useful to the electorate or otherwise consistent with the goals of this charter;

2. such tables of contents, graphics, and other materials which the board determines will make the voter guide easier to understand or more useful for the average voter;

3.  information on each candidate, including but not limited to name, party affiliation, present and previous public offices held, present occupation and employer, prior employment and other public service experience, educational background, a listing of major organizational affiliations and endorsements, and a concise statement by each candidate of his or her principles, platform or views;

4. where there is a ballot proposal or referendum, concise statements explaining such proposal or referendum and an abstract of each such proposal or referendum; and

b. For all other elections in which there are contested elections held in the city of New York for any city, county, state, or federal office or ballot proposals or referenda pursuant to city, county, state, or federal law, each voter guide shall contain information that the board deems necessary or useful to the electorate or is otherwise consistent with the board’s responsibility under this chapter to improve public awareness of candidates, ballot proposals, or referenda. 

c. Voter guides shall be prepared in plain language using words with common and everyday meanings. 

d. The board shall promulgate such rules as it deems necessary for the preparation and publication of voter guides in English, Spanish and any other languages the board determines to be necessary and appropriate and for the distribution of the guide in at least one media format. The purpose of such rules shall be to ensure that the guide and its distribution will serve to fully, fairly and impartially inform the public about the issues and candidates appearing on the ballot.

5. for a voter guide mailed in connection with the citywide primary and general elections held every four years, such voter guide shall include for each registered voter a list of the primary and general elections held over the previous four calendar years for which, according to the records of the board of elections, such voter was registered to vote and whether such voter voted in such election. Such information may be printed separately from such voter guide, provided that it is included with the mailing of such voter guide.