Over the last few weeks, we have begun printing letters to the editor, with the writers stating a preference for a candidate or a candidate laying out his or her position and credentials. These writers, we thought, were getting a head start on voting decisions that were still far in the future.
And then we read about the candidate forum held at the Bristol Senior Center Wednesday and realized that the election is now just a few weeks away.
What does that mean to the average reader? First, local elections are the ones that most directly affect your life! Those chosen set the property tax rate on your home and car. They oversee the schools that your children attend. Their job is to make sure police and fire departments are fully staffed and well trained, and they decide on changes to your neighborhood.
Yet, most of you sit out municipal elections! Turnout varies from city to town but it’s usually a minority of citizens who make these choices.
We’re hoping this year is different.
That’s why we would now encourage you to check your status. You are eligible to register and vote if you are a US citizen, 18 or older, and a bona fide resident of the town in which you apply for admission. And, while it’s probably better to register in advance, you can now do it on election day - not at your polling place, but at a designated election day registration location in each town.
This is your chance to do more than just complain. Let’s see if we can break the turnout record this year!