Fort Worth

Early voting in Texas. Will new candidates cause higher turnout in Fort Worth?

It’s time to vote.

Election Day is May 4 but early voting starts Monday and runs through April 30 for municipal elections, school board races and the Tarrant Regional Water District board seats.

There are 45 early voting sites throughout Tarrant County. Hours will vary by day. From April 22-26, ballots can be cast from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. On April 27, Tarrant County residents can vote from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on April 28 they can visit early voting sites from 11 a.m. to 4 pm.

On April 29 and 30, early polling places will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In Fort Worth, voters will choose will choose mayor and city council members. The council controls a nearly $2 billion budget and will be considering recommendations from the Race and Culture Task Force.

The Fort Worth school district is the largest in Tarrant County, with a $795.5 million budget and 82,000 students attending 148 schools. Voters will be deciding races in four of the nine districts.

In Arlington, the council council controls a $521.5 million budget. Passage of term limits has led to 17 candidates running for mayor and four council seats.

The Tarrant Regional Water District races are also drawing attention where voters can pick two board members for at-large seats.

TRWD’s board oversees a raw water utility that provides more than 117.5 billion gallons of water to 2.1 million people. TRWD is also the local sponsor for the Trinity River Vision project, known as Panther Island. The TRVA board is a political subdivision of TRWD.

The $1.17 billion project aims to protect 2,400 acres with a river channel that would form an island near downtown. Though approved by Congress, it has not been fully funded.

Turnout for municipal elections has historically been low in Fort Worth and Arlington.

Will there be anything different this year?

Thomas Marshall, a UT Arlington political science professor, is skeptical.

“Usually what drives turnout are lively contested races where people are putting a lot of money into door-to-door campaigning,” Marshall said. “I’m still not sensing anything in Fort Worth or Arlington that will bump turnout into the 20 or 30 percent bracket.”

For more information on where to vote early, visit or call 817-831-8683.

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