August 22, 2012
NEW — 1 p.m. Aug. 22, 2012
King County turnout in the Aug. 7 primary hit 40 percent, local elections officials reported Tuesday, as statewide turnout failed to meet a pre-election forecast.
In King County, voters returned 443,523 ballots and officials tallied 432,049 ballots. The difference is due to signature problems and ballots returned too late to be counted. Officials certified the election results Tuesday.
“We just certified our 12th consecutive election without discrepancies,” Elections Director Sherril Huff said in a statement.
Local elections administrators noted a reduction in the number of challenged signatures of almost 45 percent. Officials attributed the shift to a celebrity-studded outreach campaign to remind voters to carefully follow ballot instructions.
August 14, 2012
King County voters endorsed a $200 million property tax measure to build a juvenile justice facility to replace the aging Youth Services Center, a juvenile detention facility in Seattle.
The property tax measure, Proposition 1, appeared on a crowded primary ballot alongside federal, judicial, legislative and statewide contests.
August 14, 2012
The group responsible for monitoring local elections needs Chinese-speaking and Vietnamese-speaking representatives.
King County leaders put out a call for the openings on the Citizens’ Elections Oversight Committee — the watchdog group created to ensure elections follow proper procedures.
Learn more about qualifications for the position and find the application at www.kingcounty.gov/council/issues/CEOC/application.
King County Council members created the Citizens’ Elections Oversight Committee in 2003 to oversee elections and improve performance and accountability at the then-King County Elections Division.
The council made the oversight group permanent in 2006, after the contentious 2004 contest for governor between Chris Gregoire and Dino Rossi. Overall, committee members have offered more than 180 recommendations to improve local elections.
August 7, 2012
NEW — 8:40 p.m. Aug. 7, 2012
King County voters endorsed a $200 million property tax measure to build a juvenile justice facility, as King County Elections released initial results Tuesday night.
Officials asked voters to fund a replacement for the aging Youth Services Center, a juvenile detention facility in Seattle.
The measure appeared on a crowded primary ballot alongside federal, judicial, legislative and statewide contests. Voters in Issaquah and throughout Washington returned ballots in recent days, as the calendar inched closer to the summer primary — and the Tuesday deadline to postmark or return ballots.
The electorate chose the top two candidates, regardless of party affiliation, in the all-mail primary election. The top vote recipients then advance to an all-mail general election Nov. 6.
July 31, 2012
The effort to repeal the Issaquah ban on most retail plastic bags did not qualify for the ballot, although the organizer behind the effort said the fight could continue.
The development came days after the city attorney declared the issue closed, after repeal organizers failed to gather enough signatures from Issaquah voters to force a repeal measure.
City officials had asked repeal organizer Craig Keller to provide at least 2,458 signatures for the measure to be sent to King County Elections for validation. Organizers submitted 2,178 signatures — including 124 names determined ineligible and crossed out before organizers submitted the petition sheets — to the city July 5.
July 31, 2012
Elections administrators used the last days before the Aug. 7 primary to remind voters to follow proper ballot instructions.
July 19, 2012
NEW — 4 p.m. July 19, 2012
Local elections administrators enlisted renowned chef Tom Douglas, travel guru Rick Steves, Seattle Storm players and other local celebrities to remind voters to follow ballot instructions.
The elections departments in King, Kitsap, Pierce and Snohomish counties, plus the Office of the Secretary of State, collaborated on the voter education project. The effort is meant to inform voters about the voting process. The celebrities involved in the campaign donated their time for the effort.
The campaign includes radio, TV and online advertisements to remind voters to sign return ballot envelopes, return ballots back on time and follow other important instructions. The deadline to return primary election ballots is Aug. 7.
July 17, 2012
The next senator for the 5th Legislative District also held the post before the most recent occupant.
Republican Dino Rossi, a Sammamish resident, represented Issaquah in Olympia from 1997 until December 2003. In January 2004, Republican Cheryl Pflug succeeded Rossi and, after Pflug resigned to accept a state board post, King County Council members returned Rossi to the state Senate.
Rossi is not expected to serve for long. The next senator — either Mark Mullet, a Democrat and Issaquah City Council member, or Republican Brad Toft, a Snoqualmie businessman — is due to assume office in late November, after King County Elections certifies the Nov. 6 election results.
Rossi is not a candidate for the seat and, besides, after the November election, the political boundaries for Rossi’s neighborhood shift into the 45th Legislative District due to redistricting.
July 17, 2012
NEW — 9:45 a.m. July 17, 2012
King County Elections plans to mail about 1.1 million ballots Wednesday for the Aug. 7 primary.
Voters can vote and return a ballot immediately after receipt. Voters must postmark ballots by Election Day or drop ballots at a designated location by 8 p.m.
“Voters should watch for their ballots in the mail and contact us if they haven’t received their ballot by July 25,” Elections Director Sherril Huff said in a statement. “Following the instructions and returning ballots as early as possible helps us process ballots efficiently and provides time to resolve any issues that may occur with voters’ signatures.”
Issaquah City Hall hosts a ballot drop box. The elections office maintains other drop box sites throughout the county.
July 10, 2012
Ballots should start to arrive in King County voters’ mailboxes in the days ahead.
The summer primary — bumped up to Aug. 7 to accommodate military and overseas voters — allows local voters a chance to decide a property tax measure and cull the field in federal, judicial, legislative and statewide contests.
The electorate selects the top two candidates, regardless of party affiliation, in the all-mail primary election. The top vote recipients then advance to an all-mail general election Nov. 6.
In the 5th Legislative District, voters must narrow the field of Republican Chad Magendanz, Democrat David Spring and independent candidate Ryan Burkett in the race for a state House of Representatives seat.