Vote, vote, vote.
This fall, most of the region’s towns and cities — including Chapel Hill, Carrboro, Durham, Hillsborough and Raleigh — will be voting on candidates for the offices of city/town councilor, alderman and mayor, among others. Despite how important these offices are, turnout for municipal elections is dismal.
For example, in 2017 only 17.59 percent of Orange County’s registered voters cast their ballots. That same year, only 14.96 percent of eligible voters in Wake County voted in their municipality’s elections.
The turnout statistics are awful to say the least; these numbers mean that the people of those communities are giving less than a fifth of their neighbors total domain over the selection of their town or city’s elected officials.
Local government can admittedly be a little dry when compared to national or state government. However, city councilors, aldermen and mayors hold a massive amount of control over local policy. This includes governing how the schools operate, how much should be spent to maintain or improve public transit, and local affordable housing policy, among other major, crucial policy decisions.