UPDATE: Low Voter Turnout A Concern In Wood County Special Election

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UPDATE 11/25/2013 5:20 PM

After passing this Saturday, Wood County Schools' recent levy goes into effect next summer.

But county officials remain concerned.

Low voter turnout at precincts poses the question of moving election day.

The levy will fund day to day operations for Wood County Schools, with $16 million granted each year for the next five.

It will be up for a vote again in 2019.

Wood County Clerk Mark Rhodes says Saturday elections tend to have a lack of interest that can't be helped.

"The board of education, or whoever calls for the levy, is the one that designates which day that it's going to be held on," he says. "Reasons that they do it on a Saturday is because if not, they would have to close the schools and county government would also be closed because by state law that makes it a holiday."

Many of the schools are used as precincts.

The last election held on a Saturday had a 15 percent turn out

UPDATE 11/25/2013 10:05 AM

A special election was held on Saturday to authorize additional levies for the next five years at Wood County Schools.

Over $16,000,000 each year to fund the day-to-day operations of the school system.

The levy, which has been supported since World War II, was passed as 79 percent of people voted for it while 21 percent were against it.

County officials are happy with the results, but they're also expressing their concerns about low turnout at the precincts.

"It's been pretty slow at this rate, I expect about a 10 percent turnout for the total which is roughly 5,000 voters and we currently have 54,000 voters," says Wood County Clerk, Mark Rhodes.

"We're very hopeful that the security will provide that support, we want to continue to offer the very best and make the education for the students in the community the very best," added Wood County Schools Superintendent, Dr. Patrick Law.

The levy goes into effect next summer.

It will be up for election again in 2019.

UPDATE 11/20/2013 4:40 PM

Wednesday was the last day for early voting in the election to renew the Wood County Schools excess levy.

The election is to renew the levy that for decades has generated money for several Wood County Schools operations.

Election day itself is set for Saturday, November 23rd.

Satellite voting sites include Vienna, Williamstown, Mineral Wells and Lubeck.

UPDATE 11/13/2013 4:45 PM

Tight times brings the need to justify every mill brought before Wood County voters.

A levy in effect since the end of World War II is up for renewal this month.

The excess levy is for the same amount as previous levies, which have been overwhelmingly approved for more than 65 years.

This time, however, the superintendent says some money will be diverted from the transportation budget to technology.

"We have sufficient funds in transportation to do what we need to do, and we always need more money in technology," says Superintendent Patrick Law. "Other than that, the great majority of the different areas of funding will be going to are essentially the same."

Early voting on the issue began this past weekend.

Election day itself is set for Saturday, November 23rd.

UPDATE 11/12/2013 10:45 AM

A reminder that early voting is now under way for the election to renew the Wood County Schools excess levy.

It got under way this past Saturday at the Donald F. Black Annex.

County Clerk Mark Rhodes says the first day's turnout was light, with only 73 eligible voters casting ballots.

It's to renew the levy which, for decades, has generated money for several Wood County Schools' operations.

Early voting did not take place Monday because of the holiday, but it resumed Tuesday and continues through Wednesday of next week.

Hours are from 8:30 to 4:30 on weekdays and from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on weekends.

Satellite voting sites in Vienna, Williamstown, Mineral Wells and Lubeck open to the public next week.
UPDATE 11/4/2013 4:35 PM

Wood County voters can start going to the polls Saturday.

But election day isn't until November 23rd.

Monday, the county commission got its first look at the voting machine the county clerk's office will be using for that special election.

That's right, it's just one machine.

While it'll be available for voters wanting to use electronic voting, most of the votes cast will be on paper ballots for the first time since 2000.

"We still have the old election equipment, including all the ballot boxes," says Clerk Mark Rhodes. "We've got those out, to get them ready; they're all ready to go."

The incoming manager of the Mid-Ohio Valley Airport sat in on Monday's meeting.

Jeff McDougle told the commission its expected 8,000 people will travel out of the airport this year.

He added, however, the contract for Silver Airways will be re-bid next spring and it won't be known until then if the flight schedule will remain as it is now.

Election day in Ohio is next Tuesday.

But it won't be until November 23rd for Wood County Voters.

That's when they'll decide on continuing the Wood County Schools' excess levy.

The deadline for registering to vote is this Monday and early voting begins just a few days after that.

"The early voting will begin at the Judge Black Annex on Saturday, November 9th. It will run through Wednesday, November 20th," says Wood County Clerk Mark Rhodes. "We will also be doing the community voting sites at the four locations."

Those sites are the Vienna and Williamstown City Buildings and the fire stations in Lubeck and Mineral Wells.

This will also be the first election in Wood County since 2000 where paper ballots are used, although the electronic voting machines will be available by request for early voting.

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