Pitkin County voters hit polls early
November 3, 2012
ASPEN – More than half of Pitkin County’s active voters already have cast ballots for Tuesday’s election.
The Pitkin County Clerk and Recorder’s Office reported a 59 percent turnout at the close of Friday – a busy day in the office. The total includes both mail-in ballots returned by the close of business Friday and those cast by voters in person during a two-week period of early voting that ended Friday.
There are 10,570 active voters in Pitkin County, including 3,919 registered Democrats, 1,986 Republicans and 4,547 unaffiliated voters. The remainder belong to other political parties.
Both major parties saw a strong early showing at the polls – 65 percent of Democrats and 62 percent of Republicans in the county have already voted, according to the clerk’s office. Fifty-two percent of the county’s unaffiliated voters also already have voted.
Statewide, some 1.5 million of Colorado’s 3.6 million voters had cast ballots by Friday, according to The Associated Press. The statewide turnout included 37 percent of Republicans and 35 percent of Democrats.
The counting of votes will begin Tuesday.
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Friday also was the deadline for the latest round of campaign contribution and spending reports in Pitkin County.
In the District 4 race for county commissioner, only candidate John B. Young filed a report, indicating that he spent $2,026 during a two-week period that ended Sunday.
His most recent report, for the period of Oct. 13 through Sunday, details $1,225 in contributions along with $2,340 in funds on hand at the start of the reporting period.
His spending left him with $1,539 in his coffers to spend in the final days of the campaign.
Candidate Steve Child did not file a completed report by Friday’s 4:30 p.m. deadline.
Commissioners Michael Owsley and George Newman, running unopposed in districts 3 and 5, respectively, did not file reports. They both terminated their committees, having had no contributions or expenditures.
In the campaign over the proposed expansion of the Pitkin County Library, the focus of questions 5A and 5B on the ballot, proponents of the project have outspent opponents by a significant margin.
The group called Yes to Our Library, which supports the expansion, reported $145 in contributions during the period of Oct. 12 to 28 and $3,704 in expenses. The group had $1,931 on hand at the start of the period, which means recent spending left it in the red, according to its report.
The group reported $4,750 in contributions and expenditures of $2,818 in the previous reporting period.
The committee calling itself Save Our Library and Civic Plaza reported spending $825 between Oct. 12 and Sunday.
The group collected $350 in contributions during the reporting period and had $602 in cash on hand, leaving it with about $126 for the push to Tuesday’s election. Aspen resident and vocal expansion opponent Junee Kirk gave $200, and Gregory Staple, of Washington, D.C., contributed $250 during the latest reporting period. Theirs were the largest of five contributions.
Save Our Library was a day late to file its last report, due Oct. 16, with the Colorado Secretary of State. That report documented 19 donors, including Staple as its largest contributor, again with $250. Kirk, Lindsey Smith, Maurice Emmer and Daryl Snadon each gave $100 to the campaign, while retired librarian Helen Palmer contributed $25, according to the previous report.
An error in the campaign contribution/expenditure report filed Friday, Nov. 2, by the issue committee Yes to Our Library was reflected in this article published Saturday, Nov. 3, in The Aspen Times. The committee has since amended its report, reflecting a $3,000 contribution from Marty Flug of Aspen, which means the group ended the reporting period in the black, with a $1,372 balance, according to the amended filing.