Handful of voters often decide local races


While there are several thousand people registered to vote in Fort Stockton, past election totals show that less than a fourth will show up to the polls.

Early voting starts on Monday, April 22 for two seats on the city council, mayor and one seat on the Fort Stockton ISD school board.

Currently there are 4,483 people registered in Fort Stockton. A look at recent vote totals for local elections show that only 180 people voted in 2018; 560 in 2017; 607 in 2016 and 387 people in 2014.

With a city council race featuring six candidates vying for two seats, a candidate with less than 200 votes could win and be in position to help make decision for a city of close to 9,000 people.

“It's really a sad situation,” said City Secretary Delma Gonzalez. “People have just gotten used to not voting.”

This year, in an attempt to give people more opportunities to come out, voters will have two 12-hour early voting days on April 25 and April 29 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

“The turnout for city elections has been extremely low for several years,” said Gonzalez. “Voting is a privilege and I wish that registered voters that do not make the effort or time to come out and vote see that they can truly affect the outcome of an election.”

Early voting starts April 22 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

People may vote in the council chambers in City Hall at 121 W. 2nd St.