New numbers released by the DeKalb Elections Office on Thursday show that with new registrations through Oct. 9, the final registration day for the general and presidential election, the county now has 470,605 registered voters, up by 13,051 from the 457,554 registered voters for the July primaries.
Of those, 418,611 are designated active voters, an increase of 17,608 from July’s 401,003 active voters.
Through Wednesday, only 125,736 of DeKalb residents had voted, which leaves 344,869 registered voters still to vote at the county’s 189 precincts.
With the increased voter registrations, 41 of the county’s precincts have 3,000 or more voters. Seventeen of those precincts have 3,500 to 5,351 registered voters.
The majority of the large precincts are in south DeKalb County. They range from Miller Grove Middle School in Lithonia, which has 3,509 voters, to Woodrow Road in Lithonia, which has 5,351 voters.
DeKalb Election Director Maxine Daniels said the consolidation into larger precincts is by design.
“The new technology and process allows us to have large precincts,” she said, adding that nearly half of the people are voting early anyway.
In the past, when 2,000-voter precincts proliferated, Daniels said poll workers would sit all day and only 500 people showed up. With electronic voting, it also takes less time to vote if residents show up at the right place.
“Don’t go to early voting sites on Tuesday,” she said. “You have to go to your designated voting place.”
Early voting ended on Nov. 2 and there is no Saturday voting this week.
On Election Day, all 189 county neighborhood precincts will be open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Daniels said voters can locate their neighborhood voting precinct and a sample ballot at www.dekalbvotes.com or My Voter Page at http://mvp.sos.state.ga.us/ and select DeKalb.
Between Oct. 15 and 27, the number of early voters totaled 75,829 and equaled the numbers who voted over the 45 days of early and advance voting in 2008.
But DeKalb is expected to fall short of the 2008 numbers for the final week of early voting before the 2008 election, which was 150,000.
After three days of voting this week, only 36,922 people had voted.
“In 2008 we averaged 15,000 voters a day,” Daniels said. “This week we are averaging 12,000 voters a day.”
Voter turnout in 2008 was 75 percent. This election, Daniels is predicting a turnout of 70 percent to 75 percent.