Voters turned out in force in Mason today, with as much as 85 percent of registered voters casting ballots at many precincts.
Lines at the Mason Municipal Center snaked out the door early Tuesday morning, while people waited in line for more than an hour at Grace Baptist Church, said poll workers there.
“It’s a bigger turnout than usual,” said Kathleen Drake. ” It’s been nice to keep so busy.”
“Its been an awesome turnout,” added Tony Bradburn. “All of the booths have been filled.”
Some voters heading to the polls brought their children along with them, showing them what its like to vote.
Larry Mortashed came out to vote with his wife, Moria, and daughters Sara and Elisabeth, a first-time voter.
“I was pretty excited,” said Elisabeth. “I was really into it and reading up on it.”
Mozel Jones brought her 9-year-old daughter Bella. She cast her ballot for Barack Obama.
“I don’t want my rights taken away or that of my daughter,” she said of her support for the incumbent.
In Mason, voters cast their ballots for two charter amendments.
Issue 6 would amend the city’s charter to alter deadline for nominations of city council members from 75 days before an election to 90 days before an election. The change would bring the city’s deadline in conformance with the statutory deadline for Ohio.
Issue 7 would combine a property tax levy with an increase in the city’s income tax for nonresidents to support safety services. The proposed amendment would add a 0.12 percent income tax on top of the city’s existing 1 percent income tax, though only for nonresidents.
The amendment includes a limit of 5 mills for the property tax. Both rates will be adjusted annually, giving City Council the flexibility to set the rate of the proposed levy and the fire income tax.
Mason councilwoman Char Pelfrey and Mason Mayor David Nichols braved the cold in front of Grace Baptist Church to urge voters to support Issue 7.
“It balances the burden of fire/EMS to minisculely raising taxes on people who work in the city, but don’t live there,” said Pelfrey. “It makes it all balanced with all sharing the burden.”
Pelfrey, who also campaigned for GOP contender Mitt Romney, said she found a receptive audience.
“This is a very Republican area. It’s been an easy polling place,” she said.