Your vote's critical

Aug 7, 2012


Voting in any type of election provides an important way for you to voice your opinion and help decide your future.

It may not surprise you that voter turnout for national elections is significantly higher than that of local elections. While national elections obviously affect us on a grand scale, policies put in place by local elections often affect us more directly and more quickly than those on the national level.

These local elections are our chance to choose local government officials and decide on important issues. Elected local leaders determine our community’s focus on many important issues from education and law enforcement to our parks and waste management.

Local elections also give us a say on local taxes and proposals. It’s up to us to individually weigh the pros and cons, and determine what we feel is best for our community.

If you’re a registered voter, we encourage you to take advantage of your constitutional right.

Most importantly, please be sure you’ve fully educated yourself on the ballot proposals and candidates before casting your vote.

The right to vote is not something to take for granted. People have sacrificed and fought for this right.

So study up and show up at the polls on Tuesday to help ensure our community is headed in the right direction. The polling places are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Our Views reflects the majority opinion of the members of the Grand Haven Tribune editorial board: Kevin Hook, Cheryl Welch, Matt DeYoung and Liz Stuck. What do you think? E-mail us a letter to the editor to or log-in to our website and leave a comment below.


Justine McGuire

It's also important to remember that Tuesday isn't just a local election. The primary election will also determine which candidates will be on the ballot in November. And if you look at the state House race you'll see that there are only Republicans running so Tuesday's election will decide the 88th district's state representative.


In 2010 we had a low turnout as usual in the primary. In Grand Haven City very low like less than 400. Grand Haven Less than 300 Robinson less than 400 Grand haven township around 1,000
Either way its about 5% or less of the voters actually turn out. Of that number (5%) or around 7000 in the whole 89th. But interesting is all the complaining from so called "average voters" about how the rich get everything and politicians are only representing the "rich" It is obvious only the "rich" vote. This is American and if "average people" just sit around and complain in restaurants, at the stores and in news paper columns - its their own tough luck. Some people in the trailer park were barking and complaining about Amanda Price only representing the "rich" but they had 7 other candidates to pick from. They "average people" did not bother to get off the couch and vote let alone absentee. But the "rich" are smart all the families living along the Lake Michigan beach vote! Their wives, 18 or older kids in college fill out absentee ballots. That adds up. But the so called "average workers" just sit around and gripe. And they still don't learn - it will be a low turnout again


From the story: "Most importantly, please be sure you’ve fully educated yourself on the ballot proposals and candidates before casting your vote."

So where is your summary of the candidates and issues on the ballot tomorrow?
It would have been great IF it would have been with this story....but, lost a PERFECT chance to remind us.

Isn't one of the medias responsibilities to EDUCATE their readers?
I read the Tribune online daily, and I have not seen anything about the election until today. Was it all lost amid the stories about how many people were at the fireworks?


Thanks Dave, your comments are exactly correct. If we all look at the major networks, they not only explain issues and candidates, they spin it in favor of their own politics. If we look at the NY Times, the Washington Post, and the LA Times, it's not hard to see how they frame the issues and what candidates they support. However, when it comes to our local news outlet, identifying the issues regarding individual candidates, or more importantly, regarding the local taxes on the ballot ( the millage increase for our museum, senior center, and GHT emergency departments) are unaddressed. I guess if you don't even address candidates or issues,you can't be criticized - even if you don't inform your readers. The Tribune is a reliable source of local news and it should at least explain the issues and the position of the candidates on them objectively - I would hate to see the Trib abandon journalistic objectivity like their elders in the mainstream media!


zwesterhouse: While I would agree that the voter turnout is traditionally low, I disagree that it is predominatly rich people or "average" people that turnout to vote. Your rant was very hard to make any sense of. I would say the biggest demographic that turns out to vote is the elderly as they are perhaps more aware of a civic duty to take part in each election. I would agree that if you do not get out and vote you shouldn't gripe becuase each of us has a responsiblity and a duty to support those candidates and issues that serve our interest. Also, to davewali, if you are getting your information on who and what to vote for I am disappointed. Each of us should attempt to become educated on the issues and candidates prior to casting our ballot, however this so called "newspaper" is not where I would get my information from. You will get more facts by going straight to the horses mouth as they say. This current editor and tribune staff seemed more interested in stiring up controversy than gathering any "facts".



At least look at your ballot before you go.


So what is the additional equipment other then the fire truck that is needed???? in this GH twp mileage request... Its more BS that keeps showing up in this request... All I ask is for Twp fire chief and administration to tell us the truth and the whole truth... if they have so much integrity they would give us this information... But somehow they keep playing the usual twp politics...


Newspaper lawyer.....get a clue and a life. The fire truck millage includes the equipment that comes on the truck. They have said this before. The other millages on the ballot in the township are for council on the aging and museum. Why dont you find something else to do than trying to harass local government. You must be a disgrubtled ex-employee with an axe to gribd the way you constantly attack a great local community.

Cheryl Welch

Not all stories that appear in the pages of the Grand Haven Tribune also appear at All of the contested races and local issues had news articles about them that appeared on the pages of the Tribune during the past few weeks. Also, the Tribune did an overview piece after candidates filed, and after issues were announced. These articles all appeared in the hardcopy issues of the Tribune, and may be accessed at the local library via our complimentary issues provided to them. You may also subscribe to the e-edition of the paper and access archived issued of the Tribune should you like to see the stories. To subscribe to the e-paper, click on this link: and navigate toward the bottom to the e-paper subscription. Thank you for your interest, and know that we hold local elections in high regard at the Tribune.




twpresident: you have it totally wrong... not an ex employee.. and no they have never said the would be purchasing additional equipment for this truck... First they said they wanted to purchase a new truck... then it turned into a quint aerial truck which is not needed in this twp 95 % of the time... the other 5 % they could get assistance from two other cities.. just like those cities continue to borrow or trucks and staff now... but it seems must of the time it goes we are the giving ones... second a quint can not get into most driveways in this twp to do what they want it to do... third we also then were told they need the extra money to pay for equipment for the paramedic unit which was a service never authorized by the tax payers. The twp has used the money from the taxpayers to pay for this service which should have been asked for in a mileage... now they are coming back asking for additional monies to pay for this truck. Also from checking with a couple of possible electable trustee.. they state the additional money is in the twp coffers. I don't feel the twp has fully investigated the needs of this truck nor the additional cost that they are going to burden the citizens with. Finally.. after asking several question about what they were going to do with the old truck.. which now they state it has not been in worker order for 3 mos. I really have some questions. Their is NO doubt we they need a NEW fire truck. but I think a quint could be budgeted for the next truck... Remember that second truck is as old as the first out truck is... I think I put a lot more stock into the larger departments history and background investigating on the use of QUINTS in the fire services. So Mr TWP RESIDENT... I think we have done our homework and disagree that I'm some disgruntle employee or tax payer... and continue to harass the local government. Maybe some of us don't have as much money or mouth as you.


Newspaper lawyer, you may not be an ex employee however you do go out of your way to slam the township and i might add some of your facts are not correct as i have done some checking. First, the township is not hiding huge sums of money. The y do have a healthy general fund, of which they are going to spend 400k for this truck, however some of this is for rainy days. You also are partially correct in the fact they could ask for mutual aid, however how long does it take to get here? Fires grow fast and increase in size every minute. Another thing you have absolutely wrong is that both trucks are the same age. One that is considered for replacement is a 1989 and the other is a 1994. No sir or madam, i do not have all kinds of money but i do understand that some things are worththe spending money on. Yes you have went and gathered facts from several cities on the basics of quints however you did not get the facts on the local fire departments needs. That is what irritates me and if you want to say i have a big mouth so be it.


How can we expect the next generations to show up to the polls when they don't read the newspaper, listen to or watch the local news, or even watch political comedians. People getting their news from facebook and twitter feeds, who may only get local information through word of mouth or outgoing friends probably wouldn't even read an email from the township if that WERE a service that was available or provided.

Personally, I think that an optional email (or txt) based newsletter would be a great step in the right direction to getting newer generations involved. How about Facebook pages for Grand Haven / GHTwp? Twitter feeds? Do they already exist?

I'm lazy, I want reminders, and I won't watch the local news. I am interested in politics but sick of all the propoganda.


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