TOWN OF CAREFREE
The Honorable Timothy S. Bee
President of the Senate
1700 W. Washington, Senate Wing
Phoenix, AZ 85007
100 EASY STREET
PO. BOX 740
CAREFREE, ARIZONA 85377
( 480) 488- 3686 • FAX ( 480) 488- 3845
The Honorable James Weiers
Speaker of the House of Representatives
1700 W. Washington, House Wing
Phoenix, AZ 85007
RE: TOWN OF CAREFREE MAIL BALLOT PRIMARY AND GENERAL ELECTIONS HELD
MARCH 13, 2007 AND May 15, 2007.
Pursuant to A. R. S. 16- 409. B, the Town of Carefree hereby submits it's Mail Ballot Election Report. I apologize
for the tardiness of this report.
1. CHA~ GES ~ VOTER TU~ OUT.
Our March 13, 2007 Primary Election showed voter turnout to be about the same as in the March 2005 election.
The run off election in May resulted in a 13% increase due to the fact that only two candidates ran and both ran
strong campaigns. There was also a school district budget override on the ballot in May.
Following are the statistics:
3/ 07/ 87
3/ 21/ 89
3/ 19/ 91
3/ 09/ 93
5/ 18/ 93
3/ 14/ 95
5/ 16/ 95
3/ 11/ 97 ( first mail ballot)
3/ 09/ 99
5/ 18/ 99
3/ 13/ 01
3/ 11/ 03
5/ 20/ 03
3/ 08/ 05
3/ 13/ 07
5/ 15/ 07
2. COST OF MAIL BALLOT ELECTION COMPARED TO TRADITIONAL ELECTIONS.
The cost of our mail ballot election in March was $ 1.72 per voter and in May was .82 per voter and was
contracted through Maricopa County. We shared the ballot in May with a school district budget override. The
combined total was $ 7,207 including all the legal ads such as call of election and the financial statement.
ELECTION DATE REGISTERED VOTERS TOTAL COST COST PER VOTER
3/ 07/ 87 922 $ 1,410 $ 1.52
3/ 21/ 89 1,118 $ 1,413 $ 1.26
3/ 19/ 91 1,396 $ 1,447 $ 1.03
3/ 09/ 93 1,647
5/ 18/ 93 1,584 $ 3,328 ( combined) $ 1.03
3/ 14/ 95 1,741
5/ 16/ 95 1,764 $ 3,594 ( combined) $ 1.02
3/ 11/ 97 1,950 $ 1,950 $ 1.00
3/ 09/ 99 1,967 $ 1.00
5/ 18/ 99 1,967 $ 3,881 ( combined) $ 1.00
3/ 13/ 01 1,971 $ 2,897 $ 1.47
3/ 11/ 03 2,182 $ 3,208 $ 1.47
5/ 20/ 03 2,138 $ 3,143 $ 1.47
3/ 8/ 05 2,461 $ 3,668 ( includes $ 50 delivery $ 1.47
charge for ballots)
3/ 13/ 07 2,549 $ 4,174 $ 1.72
5/ 15/ 07 2,549 $ 2,246 $ .86
3. SUGGESTIONS FOR IMPROVEMENTS OR REFINEMENTS IN THE MAIL BALLOT PROGRAM.
Due to past experience, we were prepared for a wide difference between election night unofficial results and the
official results which came in a few days later. With the wide discrepancy we had experienced in the past, the
people were more understanding and did not have such high expectations regarding the early results.
It was recommended and agreed to by the County that our ballot box would be picked up as usual the week before
the election, and I would deliver it to Cave Creek after the polls closed on election night to be taken to the County
There was still a difference of approximately 15% for the March and 4% for the May votes counted between the
unofficial results on election night and the official results we received a few days later. We had made it clear to
the media and the public that the election night results were unofficial and not necessarily correct and the correct
count would be available a few days later. This helped calm the public and the candidates. We found that the
numbers for some candidates changed from the early ( unofficial) ballot count in March and the final ( official)
ballot count resulting in a run off for the General Election in May.
In the May General Election we piggy backed with the County for a school budget override election. I had agreed
that the ballots would go out 29 days before the election date. Because of the override election the County sent
the ballots out 33 days before the election. This resulted in one of the candidates accusing the Town of election
fixing since they had been told the 29 day infonnation.
The County also sent out infonnational post cards saying the May election would be a walk in election and gave
the wrong address of the voting place on the card. When this was pointed out they sent another post card
infonning electors that it was an all mail ballot election with the corrected address of Carefree Town Hall.
We would continue to suggest a process be developed so that a better total could be available earlier. We look
forward to the day when we can vote by the Internet and have almost immediate results.
4. FREQUENCY AND SEVERITY OF MAIL BALLOT IRREGULARITIES.
Neither the Town of Carefree nor the Maricopa County Elections Department observed any irregularities.
5. VOTER SATISFACTION WITH THE PROCESS.
There was confusion in the May election as to weather it was a mail ballot or walk in and why they got the ballots
so early. Those who were uncertain about mailing their ballots were welcome to place their ballots in the ballot
box which was available at the front counter from the 29 day time the ballots were supposed to be mailed until 7
p. m. election night.
6. NUMBER OF NON- DELIVERABLE BALLOTS.
For both elections, the County Election Department mailed 2,549 ballots; of those, none were returned. We were
infonned that no ballots could be forwarded so anyone out of town had to request a ballot be sent to them at
7. FINAL WORDS.
As the election official for the Town of Carefree, I find that mail ballot elections still insure a higher voter tum
We noticed with this election that voters are much more comfortable with mail ballot elections and we had few
spoiled ballots or those that had to be verified.
There was less concern by the voters in our town following these elections regarding the slow final results
because people were more aware of the . system. It seems that faster results should be available with the
technological breakthroughs of the 21 sl Century, however, and we look forward to internet voting.
TOWN OF CAREFREE
C: Town Council
Jon Pearson, Town Administrator
Ray Valenzuela, County Elections Department
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