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Voter turnout is high in primaries across several counties in the Tampa Bay area

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Steve Newborn
/
WUSF Public Media
Voter turnout in several counties in the greater Tampa Bay region last week exceeded the statewide average.

Sarasota County had among the highest turnout in the state.

Voter turnout in several counties in the greater Tampa Bay region last week exceeded the statewide average.

In Sarasota County, the 37% turnout was one of the highest in the state. Supervisor of Elections Ron Turner says it was also the county's largest turnout for a primary in 30 years. Several hotly contested races for school board likely fueled the higher turnout.

In Pinellas and Manatee counties, the 31% turnout was well above the statewide average of about 26%.

In Hillsborough and Pasco counties, one of every four registered voters cast a ballot in last week's elections. That's about the same as primaries two years ago, despite the placement of school funding referendums on the ballots for both counties.

In Polk, only 24% of voters cast a ballot. But Republicans outpolled Democrats by a margin of 52 to 38%. Two of the four Republicans running for Polk School Board won, with another entering a runoff.

Steve Newborn is a WUSF reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.