BEND, OR -- Voter turnout tends to be lower during off-year and special elections. Deschutes County Clerk Nancy Blankenship expects turnout in Tuesday's election to come in around 25%. As of Friday, it was just over 16.5%.
Central Oregon voters will decide positions on local school, fire and library boards, as well as bonds and levies for Redmond Area Parks & Rec and the Jefferson County Jail. Blankenship says the positions up for election are important and should be taken seriously, "I don't know if it's voter apathy? What it is, but you know, my position is, we get to participate in a process that's really important. Regardless of what's on the ballot, it's all about participation." She tells KBND News, "I'm just surprised that people don't realize the impact that's going to have on them. One way or the other, those are important races to really contemplate and make a good decision on."
Blankenship reminds voters it's too late to put ballots in the mail. "Voters have until 8 p.m. on Election Night to get their ballots to the drop site." She beleives most non-voters don't take into account that if money measures pass, it could cost them, and they'll have had no say in the matter. "For voter education just know that this election will cost over $100,000, so get your money's worth, participate, educate yourself on the races that are before you, and get your ballot in by 8 p.m."
A list of official ballot drop sites can be found in your Voters' Guide, or at your county Elections Office website: