Tuesday's Proposition 100 election to up the state sales tax for the next three years has already generated more ballots cast than the whole primary election two years ago.

In Maricopa County alone 420,610 early ballots had been returned to the election department as of Wednesday.

In 2008 just 345,942 ballots were cast by Republicans, Democrats and Libertarians in Maricopa County during the primary election.

"I guess they are concerned if they will be taxed or not," said Maricopa County Assistant Election Director Yvonne Reed, who called the response "huge" for a single issue, middle of May election.

But Reed warned that if voters are still holding their ballots after today, it would be better to drop them off at any polling place on Tuesday, rather than betting that the ballot will be delivered by the postal service before the polls close at 7 p.m. May 18.

And for those who want to cast a ballot in person, it's not too late. The polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day.

Reed reminded voters that the Arizona Legislature requires voters to show identification before they can get a ballot at a polling place and that voters who come in person to cast a ballot should bring photo identification.

With all the early ballots currently in the mail and expected to be dropped off on Election Day, Reed said that a close election may not be decided until each ballot has been verified and counted and the final unofficial results are released May 21 sometime after 5 p.m.

For information on polling places, visit www.recorder.maricopa.gov.

Contact writer: (480) 898-7914 or dmurphy@ahwatukee.com.


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