By Mary Kuhlman
Indiana's municipal elections may not come with the glitz and glamour of a presidential election year, but election leaders say the decisions made today will be important to voters at the local level.
According to state election data, less than one-third of registered Indiana voters turned out for last year's vote, and some analysts expect another low turnout.
Brad King, co-director of the Indiana Election Division, emphasizes the importance of voting in every election. He cites the connection between a vote and the policies of every city or town, as well as the individuals who carry them out.
"The city council determines what the speed limit will be on a residential street," he says. "Or it's the mayor's office that determines whether your street is scheduled to be patched this year. Those are all decisions made by people who will be elected."
All Indiana voters are required to present a photo I.D. in order to vote, which can be a state-issued driver's license or I.D. card, a U.S. passport or a military I.D. Polls are open until 6 p.m.
Most elections today are focused on city and town offices, and according to King, some communities have questions on the ballot regarding tax levies for schools. He notes there are at least four counties not holding an election.
"There are a number of cities and towns in Indiana which will not have an election because there are no candidates who are opposed, and the county election board has decided not to spend taxpayer money to conduct elections in those cases."