In the Feb. 12 Norman mayoral election, more than 13,000 Normanites voted, or about 18.5 percent of our city's 71,220 registered voters.

At first glance, that may not appear to be impressive, but it's important to note that the numbers are actually trending in the right direction.

Norman elects a mayor every three years.

You have to go back to 2007, when Cindy Rosenthal defeated Trey Bates, to find a mayoral election with a higher turnout.

In 2016, 9,970 people voted. More voted in 2013 (10,866) and in 2010 (12,670).

The presence of three contested city council races and a Norman Public Schools bond certainly buoyed that total but, nonetheless, Norman now has a mark to beat April 2.

That's when Normanites will vote on a stormwater bond, stormwater utility and transportation bond (and Ward 3 voters will determine who wins a runoff between Richard Bailey and Alison Petrone).

Speaking of Ward 3, that ward's residents voted in the highest numbers Tuesday, with 24.7 percent of registered voters in the ward casting a ballot.

Ward 2 had a strong showing (22.3 percent), as did Ward 4 (19.9 percent). While Ward 7 had the lowest turnout (10.3 percent), Tuesday's 572 vote total was significantly higher than the ward's average for the last decade of 328.

If you're not registered to vote, we encourage you to register -- visit for more information on how to do that. And if you are and didn't vote, we think you should.

Votes in local city elections are more powerful than at any other level of government: the Ward 3 race is going to a runoff due to only five votes.

The passage or failure of the three citywide items on the April 2 ballot will have a significant impact on the future of our community.

The Transcript's reporters will work diligently over the next month-and-a-half to inform our readers on the ins and outs of those items. We hope you consider them and then head to the polls April 2.

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