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More on the election

If you are thinking that maybe it’s time to put the Nov. 3 election behind us and look to the future, then you might be interested in seeing some figures released by Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose during the past week.

LaRose’s office issued the results of post-election audits from each of the state’s 88 counties, and when all of the calculations had been finished, the counties that used a percentage-based audit turned in an accuracy rate of 99.98 percent in the presidential election.

“Early last year we set a clear mission — that Ohio voters would be confident their voice was heard in an honest election,” said LaRose in a press release issued Tuesday. “The incredible accuracy of the results as reflected in the post-election audits should make every Ohioan proud not only of their bipartisan election officials, but of the system we have in place. Ohio ran a fair and accurate election.”

Voter turnout across the state on Nov. 3 was 73.99 percent, the report indicated. In our region, 69.95 percent of the 48,167 registered voters in Jefferson County cast their ballots.

That number was lower than the 77.67 percent who turned out in Carroll County, the 76.04 percent who turned out in Columbiana County, the 75.71 percent who turned out in Harrison County and the 72.04 percent who turned out in Belmont County.

Turnout in the various precincts varied widely through Jefferson County. Mingo Junction Precinct C, for example, had a turnout rate of 86.66 percent. That area includes Helenka Drive, Valuska Drive, Brian Street, Benita Drive, Scenic Drive, Paulman Drive and Woodland and Eleanor streets.

The Salem Precinct, meanwhile, saw an 82.93 percent turnout, while Stratton saw an 82.7 percent turnout, Bloomingdale had an 82.57 percent turnout and Mount Tabor an 82.2 percent turnout. Turnout in Steubenville’s 6-2, which includes Starkdale, Aberdeen, East Carlton, Pembroke, Bryden, Preston and Brockton roads as well as Teresa Drive and the area around the Fort Steuben Mall, had a turnout of 82.03 percent.

Turnout in Belvedere was 81.3 percent, while Precinct D in Mingo Junction had a turnout of 81.16 percent.

The lowest turnout in Jefferson County came in Steubenville’s Precinct 4-2, where the secretary of state’s office reported that 21.63 percent of the 980 registered voters cast ballots.

That includes the area from the Franciscan University of Steubenville south to the Ohio River, as well as Buckeye Street and Riverview Avenue.

All of those numbers are interesting, and they offer some food for thought as we head into the next election cycle, which already has started.

As of Wednesday, the Jefferson County Board of Elections reported it had 47, 672 registered voters. The breakdown of that number is a little surprising. It shows 31,453 voters listed as nonparty. That’s 66 percent of the total and abut four times of the number of registered Democrats — 8,452 — or Republicans — 7,708. The Green Party included 39 registered voters while the Libertarian Party had 20 registered voters.

Since this is not a presidential year, Ohio’s primary will be held May 4. And while that seems like it’s a long way off, there are some important deadlines that are closer than you might think.

We know there are likely to be some interesting items to vote on in May. Voters in Steubenville, for instance, will likely see candidates for mayor and for the 2nd, 4th and 6th ward council seats. City residents also can expect to have the opportunity to renew the 0.7 percent and 0.3 percent income tax levies.

Toronto voters are likely to see candidates for council president, treasurer and three of the at-large council seats.

And, in Mingo Junction, expect to see candidates for treasurer and two council seats.

The deadline for candidates to file is 4 p.m. Feb. 3. Write-in candidates have until 4 p.m. Feb. 22 to file and independent candidates have until 4 p.m. May 3 to file.

You need to be registered to vote, and if you have not done that or your registration has expired, you have until April 5 to get that accomplished.

Make sure you are informed and are able to have a say in the process.

(Gallabrese, a resident of Steubenville, is executive editor of the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times.)

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