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Turnout is low but vote-by-mail is hugely popular in early voting ahead of Tuesday's election

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Norine Dworkin

Monday, March 8, 2021

Founding Editor


Tiffany Tertipes

Nearly all voters who voted early in the March 9 municipal elections, chose to vote by mail.


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Early voting ended Friday in the Ocoee and Winter Garden city commission and Windermere town council elections. Voters had until 5 p.m. to turn in their ballots to the Orange County Supervisor of Elections office on Kaley St. The vast majority of early voting was done by mail.

It’s still too early to make any predictions about the outcomes of the races, but we can tell you about voter turnout ahead of Election Day on Tuesday.


District 2

In the race between incumbent Commissioner Rosemary Wilsen and former police officer-turned-law student Knox Anderson, 589 people voted early — 586 by mail. To date, that represents 8.08 percent of the district’s registered voters.

District 4

In the four-way race between incumbent Commissioner George Oliver III, former Commissioner Joel Keller, nurse-turned-first grade teacher Lori Hart and pastor Keith Richardson, 570 votes have been cast — 559 by mail. That’s 6.7 percent of the district as of today.


Town of Windermere residents can vote on all three seats up for grabs on the Town Council, choosing from among the four candidates: incumbent Bill Martini, Mike Hargreaves, Mandy David and Tony Davit. To date, 243 ballots have been returned — 241 by mail — about 9 percent turnout.

Winter Garden

District 2

In the match-up between Empire Finish Systems CFO Iliana Ramos Jones and Ron Mueller, who’s served on Winter Garden’s charter review committee and the city’s Planning & Zoning and Code Enforcement boards, 734 ballots have been cast — 728 by mail. Nearly 8.45 percent of the district has voted.

District 3

This is the race to watch. Bobby “O” Olszewski is trying to reclaim the city commission seat he abandoned to run for Orange County Commission in 2016 from incumbent Mark Maciel, who won the special election to fill that seat after Olszewski left. As of Friday, 516 ballots were cast — all by mail — nearly 10 percent of the district voting.

District 4

Incumbent Colin Sharman is running in his sixth election against ethics and compliance enforcer Dawn Antonis. A total of 813 ballots have been cast to date — 812 by mail — with 7.73 percent of the district voting.

Tomorrow is Election Day. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. If you are in line by 7 p.m., you are allowed to vote. Please check your city’s website for your voting location.

All residents of the Town of Windermere vote at Town Hall at 520 Main St.

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