EVERETT — This is it, Election Day 2017.
Voters are choosing new mayors in Everett and Snohomish while a majority of Snohomish County Councilmembers are looking to keep their jobs.
The fate of dozens of seats on city councils, school boards and fire commissions are to be decided, as well as a sales tax increase for road improvements in Mukilteo and a bond measure for a new city hall in Mountlake Terrace.
“These are the civic positions and the financial decisions that really make a difference in our communities,” said Snohomish County Auditor Carolyn Weikel.
If you haven’t voted, time is running out to do so.
You have until 8 p.m. to put your ballot in one of the designated drop boxes or take it directly to the Snohomish County Auditor’s Office in Everett.
If you’re thinking of returning it by mail, make certain it gets postmarked today. Otherwise it won’t be counted.
Results will be posted on the county elections website and on HeraldNet shortly after 8 p.m.
Weikel has predicted turnout countywide will be about 34 percent of the roughly 457,000 registered voters. As of Monday morning, the slow pace of ballot returns had Weikel wondering if the mark will be reached countywide.
Only 14.8 percent of the ballots had come back though the rate is higher in Everett, Snohomish and Mukilteo where there are hotly contested civic contests.
In Everett, two members of the City Council, Cassie Franklin and Judy Tuohy, are vying to become the first woman elected mayor in city history. Businessman Gary Watts is adding a degree of suspense with his write-in campaign.
The winner will succeed Mayor Ray Stephanson who is retiring after 14 years in the position.
In Snohomish, voters are directly electing a mayor for the first time in nearly half a century. John Kartak and Karen Guzak are dueling for the job. Also on the ballot is an advisory measure to gauge whether voters are ready to lift the city’s ban on marijuana retail stores.
In Mukilteo, most of the attention is not on Mayor Jennifer Gregerson’s pursuit of a second term against Dan Matthews.
Rather it is on the bid by aerospace executive Peter Zieve to unseat incumbent City Councilman Bob Champion. Zieve is a controversial figure in town and a political committee formed to conduct an independent campaign to convince residents to vote against him.
Snohomish County Councilmembers Terry Ryan, Nate Nehring and Sam Low are on the ballot and all are favored to win.
Ryan, a Democrat, is challenged by Republican Marcus Barton in the 1st District, Nehring, a Republican, faces Democrat Ray Miller in the 4th District and Low, a Republican, is up against Democrat Kristen Kelly in the 5th District.
For more information or assistance with any last-minute issues, call the elections office 425-388-3444.