Turnout reached 28 percent in February fire district election

February 29, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 10 a.m. Feb. 29, 2012

Turnout in the Feb. 14 election to decide a $5.5 million bond for fire station construction reached 28 percent, King County Elections announced Tuesday, as officials certified the election results.

State law required the Fire District 10 bond measure to receive a 60 percent yes vote from a turnout of at least 4,418 voters. The measure received a 64.7 percent yes vote from a turnout of 5,863 voters. (The district includes 20,791 registered voters.)

Fire District 10 is the Eastside Fire & Rescue partner serving residents in Klahanie, May Valley, Mirrormont, Preston and Tiger Mountain in the Issaquah area, plus Carnation in rural King County.

The district encompasses about 130 square miles and about 28,000 people.

Officials plan to use bond dollars to relocate crews from Fire Station 78 at 16135 S.E. 113th Place near Renton to a modern facility at a more central location at Southeast May Valley Road and 207th Avenue Southeast.

The district asked the electorate to OK the bond to fund a rebuilt Station 78 and improvements to other fire stations throughout the sprawling district. The price tag for the rebuilt station alone is expected to reach $4.5 million.

Overall, elections officials issued 189,753 ballots for measures in Fire District 10 and school districts elsewhere in King County.

Countywide, voters returned 60,880 ballots. The elections office counted 59,257 ballots. Voters returned 6,036 ballots to drop boxes at Issaquah City Hall and elsewhere.

Officials said 2,000 ballots had signature challenges. The elections office resolved 1,103 signature challenges.

Countywide, King County Elections predicted 38 percent turnout in the special elections, but turnout reached 32 percent in the contests.

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