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Wisconsin GAB Expects Low Turnout for Today's Elections

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014 -- 8:25 AM

-The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board is predicting voter turnout of 12 percent for the Spring Election today.

Wisconsin?s voters will choose among 5,981 candidates for 3,794 state and local offices, as well vote in 101 different local referenda.

?While there is no statewide race on the ballot Tuesday to draw greater attention to this election, Spring Elections are the people?s chance to have their say about local government and schools,? said Kevin Kennedy, director and general counsel of the G.A.B. ?These local officials and referenda can have a significant effect on people?s taxes and the quality of life.?

Local races include elections for three court of appeals judges, 39 circuit court judges as well as many county board supervisors, mayors, village presidents and school board members.
Other local referenda range from advisory questions about nonpartisan redistricting and legalization of marijuana in Dane County to cutting the pay and benefits of Milwaukee County Board supervisors.

Commenting on the turnout projection, Kennedy said: ?The last Spring Election with no statewide races was in 2010, and turnout was 13 percent of eligible voters. We expect this year?s turnout to be slightly less than that.?

In comparison, turnout in April 2013 with statewide races for Supreme Court and Superintendent of Public Instruction was 20.45 percent. In April 2011 at the height of the Capitol protests, turnout was 34.3 percent. Turnout at the November 2012 Presidential Election was 70.1 percent.

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