The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

Opinion

November 10, 2013

Where were you?

There are 44,486 registered voters in Hunt County. 3,761 of them voted on the Hunt Regional Hospital District’s $12.3 million bond package, or just about 8.5 percent.

Those voting totals are simply unacceptable.

The people of Hunt County have to be more involved in the voting process. We hear complaints daily about county and local governments. But when voters actually have a chance to affect real issues, they don’t show up.

It’s not like the process is very complicated. There are numerous polling locations, early voting days, electronic and paper ballots. Even the afternoon of the elections, there were virtually no lines.

We print dozens of stories about the election, along with polling locations and sample ballots, many of which we put online and on our social media sites. Residents place signs in their yards. Anyone who truly cares about the elections can easily find information about them.

So why the low turnout? Certainly transportation can be a problem. There is also a perception that a single vote does not have much of an impact.

But each vote does matter, especially when it comes to local elections. The hospital bond passed by just about 500 votes. The May YMCA bond by less than 150.

To those who did vote, thank you for fulfilling your civic duty. And for those of you who didn’t, remember that your right to vote is not one to take lightly.

 You have the ability to impact decisions made in your county and cities, from who runs city hall to how your tax dollars are spent. You and your fellow residents shape your county and cities.

It is easy to complain about the way things are. It takes responsibility and action to change the way things will be.

This reflects the opinion of the Herald-Banner editorial board. The board can be contacted at editor@heraldbanner.com.

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