Turnout across county pegged at 28 percent, less than expected

LISBON – Only 28 percent of Columbiana County’s registered voters bothered to cast a ballot in Tuesday’s election, including 1,273 people who chose to vote early.

The turnout was about 10 percent less than what was being predicted by county elections board director Adam Booth. Of the 65,045 who could have voted, only 18,282 chose to do so.

The turnout in the most recent odd-number years ranged from 42 percent in 2009 to 49 percent in 2011, but Booth pointed out there were statewide issues on the ballots those years that generated considerable interest.

The board accepted the unofficial results from Tuesday’s election but now must wait 10 days before it can meet to perform an official count, which may alter the outcome in the extremely close races once provisional ballots are added to the mix. Provisional ballots are those cast election day but left uncounted until questions about the voter’s registration or eligibility are resolved. Booth did not know as of last night how many provisional ballots there were.

There may also be some outstanding early-voting ballots that could arrive in the mail this week and would be eligible to be included in the official count, provided they were postmarked by Nov. 4.