Huge turnout expected at the pollsIf voter registration and absentee ballots are any indication, St. Croix County could produce a record turnout for the general election Tuesday.
By: Jon Echternacht, Hudson Star-Observer
If voter registration and absentee ballots are any indication, St. Croix County could produce a record turnout for the general election Tuesday.
County Clerk Cindy Campbell said last week her office was gearing up for a major crush of voters.
The Wisconsin Department of Administration estimated the St. Croix County population at 79,702 on Jan. 1, and some 59,918 people of voting age lived in the county.
“So far 44,643 have registered to vote and we get registrations every day,” Campbell said. The number represented nearly 75 percent of the voting population.
“We anticipate 96 percent turnout of registered voters,” the clerk said.
Campbell’s records showed that 41,922 votes were cast in the 2004 general election, representing 72 percent of estimated voting population. There were 4,869 absentee ballots submitted in the last election.
Campbell said a couple of municipalities have already asked for an extra 100 ballots in preparation for a big turnout.
Hudson City Clerk Nancy Korson has noticed a spike in absentee voters. As of Tuesday morning 475 people had come to City Hall in person to vote early.
Coupled with several categories of mail-in voters, including military personnel, nursing home residents and persons living overseas, absentee votes totaled 1,096 on Tuesday morning.
The state estimated Hudson’s total population at 11,865 as of Jan. 1. Korson said 10,097 eligible voters had registered, with one week to go.
“Everything points to a huge turnout,” she said. “Voters will probably be lined up before the doors open at 7 a.m.
The polls are open in Hudson until 8 p.m., “then the work of counting the ballots begins,” said Korson.
North Hudson had an estimated population of 3,700 on Jan. 1.
Village Administrator Gloria Troester said Monday that 2,200 voters were registered out of an estimated 2,700 eligible residents, or about 80 percent.
“The village has done well with registration, and we are getting new ones every week,” she said. “We are expecting a big turnout.”
Troester said the most notable increase was in absentee ballots. An estimated 250 absentee ballots had been received by Monday and more were expected.
Town of Hudson Clerk Vickie Shaw said 5,641 voters had registered as of Monday afternoon. The estimated population in the town was 7,931.
Shaw said 4,370 votes were cast in the town of Hudson in the 2004 general election.
“We have received 718 absentee ballots,” Shaw said. “This is really helpful because in the town we only have one polling place.”
She said older residents can avoid a long wait in line by filling out absentee ballots.
Town of Troy Clerk Sharon Provos said 400 absentee ballots had been turned in as of Tuesday morning. She said there were 300 absentee ballots cast in the 2004 presidential election.
Troy’s estimated Jan. 1 population was 4,534, and 2,433 eligible voters were registered as of Tuesday morning.
Provos said Troy residents cast 2,683 votes in the 2004 presidential election.