Voter turnout expected to be low today

November 8, 2011 9:45:14 AM PST
It's another year before we vote for the next president, but today, people here in Houston will vote for a new mayor as well as a number of important elections.

Polls open at 7am and there are plenty of races for voters to decide. Voter turnout is expected to be low as ballots are cast for several city races, state propositions and in some districts -- school board elections.

Five candidates are challenging Mayor Annise Parker to serve the city for the next two years. The lack of a major challenger is expected to drive down voter turnout.

There are eleven city council district races. Two new districts have been created based on the latest census numbers and some districts have been re-drawn.

Voters will also select five at-large positions. City Controller Ron Green is running unopposed. City Councilmember Jolanda Jones is hoping to hold onto At-Large Position 5. She fought off allegations of misconduct this year and today faces two challengers -- former Board of Education Chairman Jack Christie, who could send her into at least a runoff, and Laurie Robinson.

"We know it's going to be a miserably low turnout, so if you want to have an influence on an election, it's a good day to vote," said Dr. Richard Murray.

About a half dozen school districts will elect trustees, including three school board members in HISD.

Statewide there are 10 constitutional amendments voters will decide. Those proposed amendments range from property taxes and bonds, to governor pardons and election laws.

Only 65,000 out of 1.9 million registered voters turned out for early voting which ended Friday.

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