The tallies are in. Now Monroe County voters and officials are trying to understand why so few people turned out to the polls Tuesday. Board of Elections officials estimate only 35 percent of more than 400-thousand people registered casted their votes in the 2007 election. In Rochester alone, officials estimate only about 20 percent of voters came out.
One Rochester native says voting is not what it used to be.
"We were standing outside on Mt. Read Boulevard waiting to get into the polling booth to vote," said John Yockel, now an elections inspector for the county.
That was in 1972. Yockel has voted in every election since then.
"Where I voted last night, 81 people showed up," he said. "That's not too good for the 363 who are supposed to be at that district."
He says the polling place at the Emerson Street Fire Department did not fair much better, and he says he knows who's partially to blame.
"Today, young kids don't want to vote," he said. "I don't know why."
Commissioner Thomas Ferrarese of the Monroe County Board of Elections said he doesn't necessarily blame young voters for the poor turnout. He suspects there is another reason people did not head to the polls.
"There was no county executive candidate on the Democratic side," he said. "The weather also (was an issue). I think it was a bit windy and a bit damp."
Ferrarese says some local races were close. If more people had braved the cold, they might have made a difference.
"If 20 more people came out, they could have changed the election or if eight people decided they were going to vote a different way and four more people came out it would change the election," Ferrarese said.
Yockel wants to change elections as soon as possible. As president of the Lyell Area Revitalization Committee, he is going to take action.
"We're going to try to see if we can get voters," Yockel said, "whether they're absentee voters with disabilities who can't get to the polls or other people who have not signed up for the polls."