Early turnout in Summit County was highest in the state | ParkRecord.com

Early turnout in Summit County was highest in the state

Those who voted Tuesday in Summit County perhaps dodged the longest lines. More than a third of the active voters cast ballots last week.

"The first day at early voting we scrambled and put a few machines out there to try to handle it," Chief Deputy Summit County Clerk Ryan Cowley said Tuesday. "It was definitely a lot busier on the early voting than it is right now on Election Day, so far."

There were 7,082 people who voted early in Kamas, Coalville, Park City and the Snyderville Basin from Oct. 21-31, Cowley said.

With roughly 35 percent of its 23,147 active voters having already voted Monday, Summit County had the highest voter turnout of any county in the state, Cowley said, adding that 986 absentee ballots had already been counted.

"At some of the places, half of the people that we anticipated being here on Election Day have already voted," Cowley said in an interview in the Snyderville Basin. "Most places people are just walking right in and being able to vote almost immediately."

Eighty percent of the registered voters in Summit County might vote this year, he said.

"We anticipated about an 80 percent turnout and that gave us a little bit of room to play," Cowley said Tuesday. "The turnout today has been a steady flow but there has been nothing overwhelming."

But Old Town resident Jenny Jones said she didn’t wait in line to vote last week.

"It was more convenient, and quite honestly, it was a nice day last week in Park City. In Park City it’s easier to get out on a nice day and I actually walked to the polls," Jones said Tuesday in the midst of a snow storm.

She joked that, "As I look out the window, I don’t know if I would go out today."

Large snowflakes fell on balloters in Park City Tuesday.

"I voted early because I knew it wouldn’t be crowded and after I did it, I think I recruited several people to go vote early because I told everyone it was so easy and you didn’t have to wait in line," Jones explained. "Schedule-wise, it worked better for me to go last week That’s what I remember from last time was it took forever. It would help if we would open the polls a little longer to give people more opportunities."

North Summit resident NaVee Vernon said she also voted early.

"I voted early just so I could avoid the crowds It was convenient," Vernon said Tuesday. "I just feel like it’s my duty and my freedom It makes you feel strong when you can go in there and vote."

Vernon said she doesn’t cast straight-party ballots and voted for Republicans and Democrats this year.

"I am concerned with the economy right at the moment and I am also concerned with health care, and the prices that are charged people for health care," Vernon said. "My husband and I are getting close to retirement age and as you grow older you become more concerned with that."

Meanwhile, Vernon said she received the controversial flier mailed last week to people in eastern Summit County decrying the campaigns of Democrats Sally Elliott, Chris Robinson and Claudia McMullin, who are each vying for seats on the Summit County Council.

The flier was the latest communication from oursummitcounty.org, a Web site critical of the Summit County government, which has weighed in with several anonymous attempts to discredit candidates. The fliers were mailed out and placed inside last weekend’s Coalville-based Summit County News.

"I was disgusted by it," Oakley Planning Commissioner Amy Regan said when asked Tuesday about the mailer. "I think it’s dirty politics. They didn’t put their name on it and I think we’re better than that in Summit County."

The sender of the flier painted Elliott, Robinson and McMullin as weak on property rights. Their Republican opponents denied involvement in the mailing when asked Monday at a debate about oursummitcounty.org.

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