Wednesday, April 6, 2011

I worked as an election judge today - got interviewed by the local online Patch Newspaper

It's Election Day in Barrington, but you might not realize it if you walk past a polling place.

"I would describe it as slow," Election Judge Mark Ganzer said. "I can tell you we are averaging 4.8 people an hour."

I commented on this article:
Thanks for doing tis story Morgan. Final tallies of votes from District 01, 93 voters out of 910 registered voters; District 08, 73 voters out of 710 registered, so, just a little over 10% of the registered voters deemed it fit to take a voice in deciding such issues as what will be cut from District 220's school budget in the upcoming year ... so, for example, if, as seems like a very logical and financially, and legally, and safety issue, it is decided that Barrington ought to drop football -- because there are so many coaches, so much equipment, and the cost of insurance is so high -- and instead focus on boys soccer -- those who did not vote in this election really have no moral leg to stand on when they complain (perhaps bitterly) that "football is a great tradition at Barrington; we CAN'T cut football - oh, yes we CAN).

Or the library board - let's assume it is decided that in order to increse revenues, overdue books will go up to $1.00 per day and $5.00 for videos. Who couda knowed?

The local elections are the most important ones of all.

OR ... suppose that Karen Dartch and the current clatch of Village Trustees gets reelected. In which case the Village of Barrington will quietly go about it's strategy of buying up buildings in the down town area, quite on the cheap, and holding on to the land until better days arrive, more land is held, and it can be sold to a shopping mall developer ... basically, the Cook Street Project writ large, very large indeed.

The Community Church of Barrington is the polling location for voters who live in Barrington Township precincts one and eight. Compared to other elections, not many registered voters exercised their right to cast a ballot.

"In our particular precinct we have over 900 voters. It's roughly 10:30, and so far we've had 26 voters. The turn out is extremely small," said Tom Arrigo, Equipment Manger for Barrington Township precinct one.

Barrington residents will choose who will be the next Village of Barrington Trustees, Barrington 220 School Board Members, and Barrington Library Board Trustees. Of those who did vote today, many were very passionate about the election.

"People get it, because it's local. These are local elections today. School board? Hey that's really important. Village Trustees? Wow," Ganzer said.

Voter John Dalton has kids attending school in District 220. He wanted to be sure his voice was heard in the school board election.

"I don't want to see a lot of cutting of programs," he said. "I just think if we make cuts right now we're going to regret that in a few years."

Although voters like Dalton were sure to cast a ballot, many others just didn't feel today's election was very important.

"It's been perceived perhaps that it's not as important as say picking a senator or a president or whatever, so people tend to vote in lower numbers during these off year elections," Arrigo explained.

Barrington voters still have time to cast their ballots. The polls will remain open on April 5 until 7 p.m.