Some voters to see busy ballots while others have nothing to vote on Tuesday

Dayton voters have a crowded ballot on Election Day, while more than half of registered voters in Montgomery County and more than two-thirds in Warren County have nothing to vote on Tuesday.. MARSHALL GORBY/STAFF
Dayton voters have a crowded ballot on Election Day, while more than half of registered voters in Montgomery County and more than two-thirds in Warren County have nothing to vote on Tuesday.. MARSHALL GORBY/STAFF

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Dayton voters have a crowded ballot on Election Day, while more than half of registered voters in Montgomery County and more than two-thirds in Warren County have nothing to vote on Tuesday.

Dayton voters will winnow the fields of three mayoral and seven commission candidates, as well as give a thumbs up or down to six charter amendment issues.

In Greene County, 88% of registered voters have something to vote on while everyone who votes in Miami County will see at least one issue on the ballot.

But just 170,335 of Montgomery County’s 367,737 registered voters have candidates or issues to vote on, so only 181 of the county’s 360 precincts will be open Tuesday, said Sarah Greathouse, the county’s deputy elections director.

“For us, there is no such thing as a small election, there’s only a good election,” she said.

Huber Heights voters also will narrow the candidates for the mayor’s post and a council district seat. Voters in Brookville, Fairborn, Harrison Twp., Miami Twp. and Trotwood all have levy issues on their ballots.

But with no issues on the ballot, precincts will be closed in Clayton, Centerville, Englewood, Moraine, Oakwood, Perry Twp., Phillipsburg, Vandalia, Washington Twp. and West Carrollton. Just one Kettering precinct, three in Miamisburg and two in Riverside will be voting on issues that cross district boundaries.

“Whether we have 360 open precincts or 10 open precincts, every election receives the same level of diligence and security,” Greathouse said.

The smaller races bring an increased potential for elections that are too close to call Tuesday night, according to Greathouse.

“The fewer people who vote, the fewer votes it takes to make a tight margin,” she said.

Of Greene County’s 117,827 registered voters, 88% have at least one issue on the ballot, said Lyn McCoy, the county’s elections director.

The 22% of registered voters with nothing on the ballot reside mainly in the north and east portions of Greene County, McCoy said.

“There’s one small split in Cedar Twp. that has a school issue on the ballot, but Cedarville, Jamestown and Yellow Springs mainly, don’t have anything on the ballot to vote,” she said.

All 74,988 registered voters in Miami County have at least one issue on the ballot Tuesday, said Ian Ridgeway, deputy director of the county’s elections board.

A renewal levy for the Miami County Combined Health District will be on everyone’s ballot except for voters in Piqua and Troy. But voters in Troy have multiple items to vote on, including a school levy and one for the Troy-Hayner Cultural Center, as well as Republican primaries for various city offices. Piqua has a school levy on the ballot. Tipp City voters will also vote whether to renew an income tax.

While all 85 precincts in Miami County will be open Tuesday, the county won’t have as many people working the polls as in last year’s presidential election, said Ridgeway, who is expecting a turnout of 20-25%.

“It’s much less,” he said. “In November, we staffed everything at 150% of normal just to help with the the volume. ... Since the volume’s so much lower, we’re not over staffing at this time.”

In Warren County, fewer than a third of 162,000 registered voters have an issue on their ballot, and for all but eight, it’s a lone issue, said Brian Sleeth, the county’s elections director.

“There’s not very much on it,” he said. “Many voters are surprised when they come to our office to vote early and there’s nothing else on the ballot, because they think candidates are on the ballot.”

The eight Warren County registered voters who live within the Xenia School District have two issues on the ballot, Sleeth said.

Just 65 of Warren County’s 175 precincts will be open, a vast majority located in Lebanon and Springboro where school levies are on the ballot. All 27 precincts in Mason, the county’s largest population center, will be shuttered, Sleeth said.

“I don’t need any poll workers, I can tell you that for sure,” he said.

Sleeth expects turnout among eligible voters to hover around 15%, far below the November election when Warren County saw 82% turnout and the statewide average was 74%.

Elections directors all said the COVID-19 precautions voters saw last year will be followed Tuesday.

“We’re going to be using the exact same protocols we had in November,” Ridgeway said. “We’ll have masks available and hand sanitizer, and we’ll be sanitizing booths after people vote — the whole nine yards.”

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