Ballots are due today

For Aberdeen and Hoquiam, today is Election Day and ballots must be postmarked by the end of the day or save a stamp and drop ballots off at either the Auditor’s Office in Montesano or at the drive-up ballot box at the Grays Harbor YMCA in Hoquiam.

Election results will be posted on the county’s website after polls close at 8 p.m. As of Monday, 3,491 ballots have been returned for both elections out of 11,936 ballots sent out.

There will also be a drop-off box inside the Grays Harbor YMCA for those who want to greet an election worker or don’t feel comfortable with the outside boxes.

The Aberdeen City Council is asking voters to consider a sales tax increase of 0.13 percent with the hope of generating between $500,000 and $600,000 annually, specifically tagged for roads. All of Grays Harbor has an 8.4 percent sales tax rate, and the proposal would bring the rate within the city to 8.53 percent

The City of Hoquiam wants to take out a 20-year general bond valued at $1.2 million to pay for a ladder truck. The city has said the cost would be an increase of 19 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value for Hoquiam property owners.

Aberdeen needs a simple majority to get its ballot measure approved, according to City Attorney Eric Nelson. Hoquiam needs a 60 percent supermajority to be approved.

Hoquiam’s measure narrowly failed in May of 2011, when the measure ended up with 59.85 percent approval. This is the first time Aberdeen has asked for a sales tax increase for roads.