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By Margaret Toal
For the Record 

Voting starts slow for November elections

 

Last updated 10/24/2023 at 7:47pm

Early voting has been slow for the November 7 election that includes three local entities asking for voter approval on different issues the Orangefield school district, the Little Cypress-Mauriceville school district, and the city of West Orange.

The ballot includes 14 Texas Constitutional Amendment propositions, including Proposition 9 to give a cost of living raise to retired teachers, who do not have COLA payments and most cannot collect Social Security, even for a deceased spouse.

The Orange County Elections Administration Office reported Tuesday evening that a total of 576 people voted early after the first two days.

Early voting is held at the Orange Public Library, the Orange County Airport, Mauriceville Community Center, and the Raymond Gould Community Center in Vidor. A registered Orange County voter may go to any one of those sites. That means it will be hard to determine, for instance, how many people have voted in the Orangefield school bond election.

The Orange Public Library has the most early votes with 221, followed by Vidor with 140, the airport with 128, and Mauriceville with 87. So far, 83 absentee ballots have been counted for a grand total of 659. The county has 54,476 registered voters.

The Orangefield school district has a $43 million bond issue on the ballot with plans to construct new buildings, particularly to replace portable classrooms, enhance security on the three campuses, plus other improvements.

The LC-M district is asking for a Voter Approved Tax Rate Election, to let the district collect more property taxes for the general maintenance and operations, not a bond election for new buildings.

The city of West Orange is asking voters to approve a 1/4 percent economic development sales tax. State law limits the ways the special tax can be used and an economic development corporation with board members appointed by the city council will oversee the expenditures.

Mayor Randy Branch said the tax can be used to entice more business development within the West Orange city limits.

Early voting hours will continue Wednesday, October 25, Thursday, October 26, and Friday, October 27, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Then early voting will continue on Monday, October 30, through Wednesday, November 1, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Extended hours will be from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, November 4, and Friday, November 3.

This election is not for local individual public offices. Primary races for county offices like sheriff, constable, and county commissioner will be held in March.

 

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