We provide a compresssed file for download and an uncompressed file for onlien viewing.
You may download a 2.8 MB, compressed file, a list of some registered voters in Queens Borough, New York City, in early 2001.
Information about several fields in voter file layout EAXBV050, 25 April 1995, follows.
Above, we guess that A means alphabetic or alphanumeric, and N means numeric. Where two numbers are separated by a comma, we guess that the first is the column where a field begins and the second is the length of the field.Alternate Address Line 3 A 385,25 Alternate Address Line 4 A 410,25 Polling Site ID A 435,5 Numeric Site Version N 440,2 Status Change Date N 442,8 yyyymmdd Alternate Address Effective D N 450,8 yyyymmdd Election 1 A 458,8 Election 2 A 466,8 Election 3 A 474,8
As far as we know, the lowest zip code is 11373 and the highest is 11418.
The file has records. Each record is one line and describes one voter. Each record has fields, which we describe, not necessarily perfectly, and guess about below. There seems to be more than one format for the records. Our remarks below about the records are intended to apply to many, perhaps most, of the records.
Voters are listed by those numbers. Voters with the same number live close to each other, usually within walking distance. Voters with the same number are listed alphabetically. The number identifies voting districts.
The first digit, which is always 4 in this list, means Queens. (When the city's counties are listed alphabetically, Queens is fourth.) The second 2 digits are the state assembly district. The next 3 digits are the election district.
To use your browser to search for, for example, city councilmember Melinda Katz by name, one searches for a 27-character string: Katz, 16 blanks (to complete the 20-character surname string), Melinda. To search for Melinda R. Katz by name, one searches for a 36-character string: Katz, 16 blanks (to complete the 20-character surname string), Melinda, 8 blanks (to complete the 15-character prename string), R.
The zip code always starts with
Voter's 8-digit birthday (4-digit year, month, day), another 8-digit date (maybe the date that the voter first registered to vote in Queens, not necessarily at his current address), a letter which represents the voter's political party (for example, D=Democrat, R=Republican), F or M (female or male), A (active voter?), 2000, a letter (for example, R or H; regular or handicapped?)
The string starts with "02/18/2001". This may be the date that the information in this list is accurate. The string ends with 29, the city council district.
Examples are A, AA, B, BB.
This is the second appearance of that number in the voter's record.
There are eight digits (usually zeroes but sometiems an 8-digit date).
There is a 4-digit year, 2-digit month, and 2-digit day: maybe the most recent registration date of the voter at his current address. The second date is never earlier than the first date, and often the same. If the second date is more recent than the first, we guess that the voter moved within Queens and reregistered at his new address.
There is a 2-digit number which is the voter's state assembly district.
A small number of voters have field here. The field might be "T" or "P" without the quotation marks.
In some voter records, an address or other text (for example, "TAKEN") is here. The address may be a post office box and is not necessarily in America. Maybe it's a correspondence address. The address can be in care of someone else; for example, a voter's relative or school.
The first character is Q or a digit. The other characters are digits. Sometimes toward the end, there is an 8-digit date (year, month, day) which might be the date of the most recent correspondence address. If there's more than one date, the string will be longer than 24 characters. If the string is longer than 24 characters, it may replace one or both of the zero-fields (one-digit fields consisting of one zero) described below.
If the preceding field is longer than 24 characers, one or both zero-fields may not exist.
The BoE (Board of Elections) has much information about voters. For example, the BoE has a brief, physical description of voters including eye color. The BoE knows which voters are citizens as the result of naturalization. The BoE knows in which elections voters voted. We don't know if the voter records we supply have that information. By the way, the BoE supplies (at least, it used to) a brief explanation of the fields but it is incomplete and includes a mistake.
Private vendors sell voter lists (for example, lists of voters in Queens) over the Web. More or less, we give away voter information that other websites sell. If you want to buy a voter list through the Web, go to one of the websites that sell them. By the way, many websites provide people's names, addresses, and ages (or year and month of birth). We guess that some of those websites get some of their information from government-supplied voter lists.
That concludes our explanation of and guessing about the voter list we supply. Below we discuss the BoE. New York city's BoE has lists of voters. The Board is required to sell copies to anyone who wants to buy.
The city has five counties. In each county, there is a Democartic and a Republican committee. Each of the ten committees has a chairman. Each chairman chooses a represenative. Those ten representatives are the Board. The computer staff is supposed to provide lists of voters and other data files. If a commoner tries to buy a voter list, the computer staff may deceitfully, illegally try to evade and stall forever. You may have to persistently remind and eventually engage a little confrontation to get the computer staff to release a list. By the way, if a computer staff supervisor asks you where you work so that he can call you at work when the list is ready, he really wants to know where you work to know if he should make the list (where you work is a clue to him about whether he can safely ignore you). He doesn't need to know where you work. If you give him a non-work telephone number at which he can leave a message that the information is ready to be picked up, that is a clue that he can safely ignore you. If you want a voter list, you may be asked what inforamtion you want in the list. Say you want everything; for example, name, domicile address, correspondence address if different, date of birth, sex, political party, physical traits such as eye color, whether the voter became a citizen through naturalization, and every election in which the voter ever voted; and say that you want the information for all voters (active, deceased, and all others). Information about all voters (for example, information about a deceased voter who lived with the person in whom you are inerested) may help you.
We once wanted to attned a Board meeting. By law, they are open to the public. The staff untruthfully told us that we were not allowed to attend. We nevertheless went at the time and place of the meeting, and we were allowed in.
Government agencies often give a receipt for a document filed with those agencies. For example, courts and other agencies, on request, give a receipt in the form of a conformed copy. When one files a document with the BoE, the BoE provides no receipt (for example, no conformed copy). This policy facilitates fraud by the BoE, which seems to be the reason for the policy. Once, we filed a few originalsof a document with the Board. We can prove that we did so. Later, the Board said that it did not have any of the originals. This is because the Board threw them out.
Once, we wanted to buy a copy of a document from the Board. The staff lied and stalled a long time. Eventually, inexplicably, the copy was made available at a diffent office of the Board. In the interval, many other people had promptly been provided with copies of comparable documents. We were informed that the delay was done to thwart us.
New York city's municipal government and politics are notoriously corrupt. The Board's practices (for example, illegally thwarting and obstructing access to records and meetings) help corruption regardless of which practices result from illegal intent and which from incompetence. It is common to urge people to obey the law, and reformers to work within the system. In New York city, reformers either obey the law or work within the sytem. Anyway, we hope you find the voter list, which took work and confrontation to get, useful.
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