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ONLY ON 3: Low early voting turnout costing taxpayers more than $7 per vote

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — It’s your voice your vote and in most cases your money.

Voting may not only be important to your rights but to your wallet, too.

The New Hanover County Board of Elections says so far the voter turnout in one stop voting is low. They hope more people turn out this week so that the money that they’ve already spent is put to work.

“When you look at is as far as money well spent, the more people that turn out obviously the better we are spending our money to conduct the elections,” said Marvin McFadyen, Director of the New Hanover County Board of Elections.

There are four early voting polling stations open in New Hanover County. On average, about ten employees man each station. Those 40 people are paid ten dollars an hour.

In the eight days they’ve been open, that adds up to $24,800.

Divide that by the 3,306 who have voted early and that means New Hanover County taxpayers have spent an average of about eight dollars per vote.

“We base our expenditures on the number of qualified voters not necessarily the turn out, so if we have a low turn out and then we calculate that into a per voter type scenario, it can be an expensive election depending on the number of people that come out to vote,” said McFadyen.

Workers say the number of voters picked up Monday which they think is a good sign.

“I’ve been a part of primaries before where we got less than 15%. I think this time, we’re getting a pretty good turnout,” said poll worker Ronald LaFond.

Early voting locations across the county are open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.and also on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

This Saturday will be your last day to vote early before election day next Tuesday.

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