for Thurston County Voters
The arrival of fall brings the November 4 General Election and the 2003 Thurston County Local Voters’ Pamphlet. This year’s theme, “Express Yourself – VOTE,” encourages voter participation. As Thurston County registered voters, we have an opportunity to vote for the people who directly impact our daily lives.
High profile elections offices, such as the Presidential, tend to have the highest voter turnout; however, it is the actions of local elected officials such as Mayor, City Council Members, School Board Director and Fire Commissioners, Park and Recreation Commissioners and Cemetery Commissioners, that touch us each day. Their decisions impact the communities where we live, including traffic flow, the response time of emergency personnel, the subjects studied in school and park maintenance.
Whether you vote at the polls or by mail, I feel it is important that voters be informed. To this end, my office has worked with TCTV to provide a Video Voters’ Guide for the General Election for the past ten years. It allows you an opportunity to hear from candidates on the ballot in Thurston County.
I encourage you to find time in your busy schedule to watch this important, informative program. I am certain you will find this pamphlet and the Video Voters’ Guide to be helpful when it comes time to cast your vote. I suggest you use the sample ballot on pages 4-7 to write down your choices. Don’t forget the statewide initiatives you will be voting on in this election. You can obtain more information in the Secretary of State’s voters’ pamphlet or online at www.vote.wa.us.
Congress passed sweeping legislation last fall requiring changes in the way all counties conduct elections. The change that will impact our county the most is the requirement to replace our punch card voting system. This year's General Election will be one of the last elections to use this system of voting in Thurston County.
We have solicited and received considerable public input on replacing our punch card voting system. The Auditor’s Office will move to a new ballot tabulating system for the 2004 Primary and General Elections. Voters will use a pencil or pen to mark their votes on their ballot. In 2005, Thurston County will place voting machines in pollsites to accommodate voters with special needs and meet additional federal requirements.
This Voters’ Pamphlet is designed to help you become more informed about the races and issues that effect your daily life. I encourage you to participate in this election, giving you a voice in the future of our community.
"Express Yourself - VOTE!"
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