Still time to turn in ballots

Robert Collins double-checks his ballot before turing it in Tuesday at Crossroads Christian Center.

While absentee ballots flood into the county elections official’s office, voters who missed the mail-in deadline have until 8 p.m. Tuesday to turn in their ballots at designated dropoff sites in town, or at any local polling place on Election Day.

“We don’t want to take a chance that we don’t receive them,” said Santa Clara County registrar’s spokeswoman Elma Rosas.

A flurry of local, state and regional races, plus a list of local measures and state propositions, will appear on the General Election ballot which includes the U.S. presidential race.

The registrar’s office will man a “drive-thru” ballot dropoff site at the VTA bus stop, at 169 West Main Ave. near Hale Avenue, until 8 p.m. Tuesday, Rosas said. Absentee voters and those who cannot make it to their designated polling place can turn in their ballots there.

As of Sunday, the registrar’s office received more than 262,000 absentee ballots, Rosas said. The office has issued more than 601,000 absentee ballots for Tuesday’s election.

Local races

Running unopposed in Morgan Hill are Steve Tate for mayor, Irma Torrez for city clerk and Mike Roorda for city treasurer. All three are incumbents.

In the election for City Council, four candidates will vie for two seats whose terms expire at the end of this month. The candidates are incumbents Larry Carr and Marilyn Librers, plus Joseph Carrillo and Matt Wendt.

On the Morgan Hill Unified School District board of trustees, appointed incumbent Bob Benevento, plus challengers Rick Badillo, Stephen Klem, Marty Cheek and Brenda Cayme will vie for three seats.

Local measures

Three local measures – one sponsored by the county, one by the MHUSD and one by the Santa Clara Valley Water District – will appear on the ballot.

Measure A, sponsored by the county, will install a one-eighth-cent sales tax to fund basic services, such as law enforcement and public safety, trauma and emergency room services, health care for low-income children, economic development and job creation, housing for the homeless, and school programs. The eighth-cent tax is expected to raise about $500 million over 10 years.

If it wins a majority vote, the sales tax will remain in place for 10 years, with annual fiscal reports to ensure accountability.

Measure B, sponsored by the SCVWD, will require a two-thirds vote to continue an existing parcel tax that is currently set to expire in 2016.

The parcel tax will fund what is known as the “Safe, Clean Water program,” which is designed to ensure a reliable water supply, reduce toxins, hazards and contaminants in waterways, protect dams from earthquakes and natural disasters, restore wildlife habitat and preserve open space, provide flood protection, and keep water clean in creeks and bays.

If approved, the parcel tax rate will remain at the same rate as the existing SCVWD parcel tax. The tax is expected to raise about $548 million over 15 years.

Measure G, sponsored by the MHUSD, requires a 55-percent vote and will allow the school district to borrow a $198.25 million bond to improve infrastructure and technology at district elementary, middle and high schools.

The bond would be used to repair leaky roofs, upgrade old plumbing, improve heating and cooling systems, classrooms, outdated restrooms, upgrade fire safety, improve energy efficiency, improve handicapped accessibility, and modernize equipment, sites and facilities.

None of the funds would be used for administrator salaries. The measure also allows citizen oversight over the bond program if it is approved.

State and regional races and propositions

The following national, state and regional races will also be decided:

U.S. Senate – Incumbent Diane Feinstein (Democrat) against Elizabeth Emken (Republican).

17th Congressional district (Cupertino to Gilroy) – Incumbent Mike Honda (Democrat) against Evelyn Li (Republican).

19th Congressional district (San Jose, Morgan Hill and north Gilroy) – Zoe Lofgren (Democrat) against Robert Murray (Republican).

20th Congressional district (south Gilroy, Salinas, Monterey) – Sam Farr (Democrat) against Jeff Taylor (Republican).

13th state senate (most of Santa Clara County) – Jerry Hill (Democrat) against Sally J. Lieber (Democrat).

17th state senate (parts of Santa Clara County including Morgan Hill) – Bill Monning (Democrat) against Larry Beaman (Republican).

30th state assembly district (formerly the 28th district) – Luis Alejo (Democrat) against Rob Bernosky (Republican).

For more information on national, state and regional races, as well as state ballot propositions, or to find your polling place, visit the registrar’s website at

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