Record turnout in Sioux Falls events center election - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Record turnout in Sioux Falls events center election

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The ballot measure for a proposed events center passed with 23,283 votes in favor of building the facility.

What was surprising to most people was the actual amount of people who came out to the polls or voted absentee.

Sioux Falls voters were ready to perform their civic duty.

The city set a record with more 5500 absentee votes cast in the events center special election.

But people also packed the polls to let the city know they want an events center now.

41% of the voters in Sioux Falls cast their ballots, it's a number that caught many in the city by surprise.

"it was really exciting, not only was the turnout percentage the highest since 1994 but the number of voters was outstanding the previous number of voters for a city election was 32,000 and we had over 40,000 yesterday." Said interim city clerk Sue Roust. 

Mayor Mike Huether couldn't be happier with the outcome of the election, but the mayor says he is also very proud so many in the city showed up to the polls to voice their opinion.

"They could have stayed home, it was a gorgeous day they could have easily done this or that but you know what they decided to do? they decided to vote." Said Mayor Huether.

Roust says it's presidential elections that tend to bring out the most voters.

The events center was the only item on the ballot, but voters still showed up.

"Traditionally special elections have drawn a low turnout but this was such a clear issue, people understand it and were talking about it and a lot of grassroots discussion led to the high turnout." Said Roust.

The mayor says it was the city's stance to inform voters on every issue going into the building.

The city wanted to do this the right way and the mayor believes the votes send a very clear message that an events center is what this city wants.

"They were informed, they were engaged and I think people were motivated to make this city better than it already is." Said Mayor Huether.

Roust says a high turnout lessens the per voter cost to the city and this election's numbers could make the per voter cost the lowest the city's ever seen.

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