Deadline is 7 tonight for voters to cast ballots in GJ municipal election

Voters have until 7 tonight to cast their votes in an election that had seen only a 27 percent return rate of mail ballots as of Monday night.

In three separate questions, voters are being asked to decide if the officeholders for sheriff, coroner and district attorney should be given one more four-year term of office for a possibility of serving 12 years. Currently, each officeholder is limited to two four-year terms of office.

Voters also are being asked to decide among three candidates in School District 51’s District E race.

Those two questions are the two that affect most county residents, said Sheila Reiner, chief deputy and elections director for the Mesa County Clerk and Recorder’s Office.

Residents in various corners of the county are being asked to vote in the Delta County Board of Education election, weigh in on the question of eliminating term limits for the Mesa Water and Sanitation District, and decide if taxes should be increased — to raise up to $2.9 million — for the Grand River Hospital District.

Usually by the Monday prior to Election Day, some 45 percent of mail ballots have been returned, Reiner said.

Reiner said the percentages are misleading because the county saw record voter registration last year during the presidential election.

Active registered voters in 2008 reached 75,926.

“Which is a significant increase from the numbers we had from the last mail ballot election in 2007 when we only had 59,341 active voters,” Reiner said. “So you can see why that makes our percentage pretty low.”

The total number of registered active voters for this election is 79,467. But because of a change in state law since the last election, that number includes 4,664 people who failed to vote. Reiner said a realistic number of active registered voters for this year is 74,908, which is 1,018 fewer than last election.

Of that number, 27.3 percent, or 20,471, already have voted, according to the clerk’s office.

There is still a chance late ballots could boost the numbers, but they have a long way to go before catching the 92 percent (70,089) who participated in the 2008 general election.


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