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Low voter turnout expected in Kalamazoo and Portage city races


KALAMAZOO (WKZO) -- Kalamazoo County Clerk Tim Snow says there will be a few changes in municipal elections today.

A number of voters in Portage will be voting at new locations for the first time. They have been notified by mail. Voters in Kalamazoo, who used to vote at Woodward Elementary, will vote at Stockbridge United Methodist instead because the old school is no longer there.

Snow is expecting the typical low voter turn out for city races. There are no big issues in either Kalamazoo or Portage this year.

So why do so few people turn out for city elections?

WMU Political Science Professor John Clark says it’s because they don’t know who is running. He says the fact that local elections are non-partisan also gives voters one less handle to grab onto.

He says current commissioners appear to be doing their jobs and have managed to avoid controversy.

A typical city election will bring out 20 to 25% of the voters if the weather is nice, and it’s expected to be nice today.

The polls close at 8 p.m.