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Elections changed

The city of Sturgis will move its municipal elections to even-numbered years, following a unanimous vote taken this week by community leaders.

Starting Jan.1, the city will implement the even-year vote, as 2015 will not be an election year. Instead, the next vote to select city commissioners will be decided in 2016.

Consequently, current commissioners whose terms would have expired at the end of 2014 will serve 12 additional months. A public hearing on the matter Wednesday drew no comments.

City Manager Mike Hughes said the measure had been considered for a number of years. The appeal, he said, is an opportunity to improve voter turnout as well as saving money.

A few precincts in Sturgis have consistently seen the lowest voter turnout in the county, and Sturgis officials hope including city commission elections on the ballot with other races – including the presidential in 2016 – will yield a greater number of voters.

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