BOSTON (AP) — The Massachusetts House and Senate have given final approval to a bill that extends mail-in and early voting options through the end of June.
The options were originally approved last year as part of the state’s effort to make voting easier and safer during the pandemic.
The vote-by-mail provision was previously set to expire at the end of March 2021.
Extending the voting options would help cities and towns holding municipal elections in the spring, supporters said.
“As other states across our country work to disenfranchise their voters, I am proud Massachusetts is choosing to extend and enhance efforts to ensure every eligible resident can exercise their fundamental right to cast a ballot in our local elections,” Democratic Senate President Karen Spilka said in a written statement Friday.
The two Democratic-controlled chambers approved the bill Thursday and shipped it to Republican Gov. Charlie Baker.
Some Republican lawmakers have raised concerns about extending the voting options before first conducting an analysis of how the options worked last year to identify any strengths, weaknesses, opportunities or threats.
Democratic Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin has proposed making the mail-in voting option permanent in Massachusetts.