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Advance voting turnout low for primary here

Despite a sometimes heated primary race for four seats on the Bryan County Board of Education, local turnout hasn’t mirrored the record setting early voting across the state, Election Supervisor Cindy Reynolds said Wednesday.

As of Tuesday evening, just days before the May 24 primary, only 2,614 of the county’s more than 30,000 registered voters had cast ballots in either Pembroke or Richmond Hill, and 200 of 201 mail in ballots had been received, Reynolds said.

That those numbers are low is also surprising given two referendum items on the ballot – Pembroke is asking residents to vote on whether package sales of liquor will be allowed in city limits, and the county hopes voters will renew the Transportation Special Local Option Sales Tax, a penny sales tax known as TSPLOST.

In addition, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp is facing a challenge in the Republican primary from former Sen. David Perdue, Baxley educator Dr. Kandiss Taylor and others. By contrast, numbers released by Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who is also facing a challenge within his own party, showed 496,971 residents have voted in person during early voting as of Tuesday, while another 42,326 voted by absentee ballot. Raffensperger said that was a 156 percent increase in early voting over the same time frame during the 2018 primary.

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