Lack of young voters in city of Sarasota has some concerned

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SARASOTA - A lack of young voters in Sarasota has some community leaders concerned.

“Where the Votes Are” is an event that the SRQ Media Group hosts after each city election. On Tuesday, the group reviewed the March 12th city election, but the results were disturbing.

Right after elections, the SRQ Media Group does a precinct by precinct analysis of the election. The results from March's city elections showed a lack of young voters, despite several groups best efforts to bring them in.

Voter turnout for municipal elections is always on the low side with only about 15 percent of registered voters actually casting their votes. But out of the 6,000 or so registered city voters, less than 200 under the age of 30 voted.

To make matters worse, Jacob Ogles, senior editor with the SRQ Media Group, says the city had more voters come out for the march 12th election who were over the age of 90 than who were younger than 30. “I think people, particularly with local government, aren't as aware of how local government affects their lives, while they're still young professionals, while they're still working and maybe their lives are focused on other matters. There's also a lack of a sense of responsibility among the younger voters to actually get out and vote.”

In the meantime, SRQ Media Group says local young professional organizations will keep up with their efforts to encourage younger residents to vote. The next Sarasota city election is in May.