ELECTION DATES MAY OR MAY NOT MATTER

by - April 26, 2016

Ask the person on the street when elections are held, and they’ll say, “Duh, in November.” Ask an election official, though, and depending on what state they’re in, they may say, “Spring, fall and sometimes in between,” or “They never stop—we’re doing elections all year long.”

With all eyes on the presidential nominating races, it may be hard to contemplate the elections that take place outside November: municipal elections, special district elections, school elections and even special elections to fill vacancies. And yet, legislators are thinking about them—or at least thinking about when is the best time to hold them. Is it easier to run a lot of small elections, or to run fewer-but-bigger combined elections? What do these choices mean for costs? And for turnout?

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