by Mayor Tammy

Early Voting for the Primary Election is currently underway here at Meridian City Hall ahead of Election Day on May 17. This is an important election and I encourage voters to get out and make your voices heard!

Your ballot will include candidates for United States Senator; United States Representative- District 1; Idaho Supreme Court Justice; Appellate Court Judge; State Representatives and Senators; as well as Ada County Sheriff, Prosecutor and Commissioners for Districts 2 and 3. There are a lot of decisions to be made. I encourage you to educate yourself on these candidates.

A ballot item that is receiving a lot of attention is the West Ada School District Trustee Recall for Zones 1 and 3. The people who serve on our board of trustees for the school district oversee a $400 million budget and are critical to the vitality of our community and neighboring cities. When I moved to Meridian, I did so because of our great school system. I attribute much of our growth to the top notch education in our area. We can’t afford to lose that quality education reputation – for our kids and in retaining and attracting family-wage jobs. That’s why your voice is important. Did you know in the last election, trustees were elected with less than .01 percent of voters in the district? That means out of 20,000 potential votes per zone (40,000 total), one trustee received 185 votes, the other 389. It is a privilege and responsibility to vote and to have a voice, especially when we are talking about our kids and a majority of your tax dollars – so get out to the polls and decide the direction of our school district!

Another item to be aware of as you head to the polls, is where the Ada County Commissioner candidates stand regarding the courthouse issue facing Meridian and Garden City residents, and eventually residents in all other cities in Ada County. The issue stems from a 22-year-old court order that says our two cities must build a courtroom. This order should have become null and void when Ada County residents overwhelmingly voted to consolidate court facilities in 1996. Our courts are a countywide responsibility and that deserves a countywide solution, rather than singling out two groups of residents to pay twice (Meridian and Garden City). I urge you to find out where all of the candidates for Ada County Commissioner stand on this issue before the election. It is our hope that commissioners will sit down at the table with us and find a solution that works for all. You will find more information on this issue on our website at www.meridiancity.org/courthouse.

Primary elections matter and there are some important decisions impacting Meridian that will be made by the people we choose to represent us at all levels of government. While early voting makes it even easier to get out and vote, you need to know the people and what they stand for before heading to the polls. You can vote here at Meridian City Hall until Friday, May 13 from 8am-5pm. On Election Day, head to your regular polling place which will be open from 8am-8pm. Ada County has set up a great page with more information on the Primary Election, polling locations and more at www.idahovotes.gov.

Get informed about the issues and the people involved. I look forward to seeing you out at the polls, where together we will define the future of our community and state.

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