March 10, 2017

Register to Vote or Run for Office in the Upcoming May Special District Election.

In the November 2016 Presidential Election 79.99% of registered Multnomah County voters returned their ballots.
The next election in Multnomah County is a local election.  The Special District Election will be held on May 16, 2017 for local school, water and fire district board members.

In the last local Special District Election in May 2015 only 17.56% of registered Multnomah County voters returned their ballots. In May 2013 turnout was at 42.21%, May 2011 turnout was at 36.60%, and May 2009 it was a low of 15.16%. You can see turnout is low when you compare it to the 79.99% turnout for the November 2016 Presidential Election. Voter turnout is low in local elections unless a particular measure generates extra interest from the public. This shouldn’t be the case.  

You can have a big impact in this Special District Election when you help to choose your local school board. You can even get involved in local politics by running for one of the many open positions. If you are considering running for office, don’t delay! The deadline to file is 5:00 PM on March 16, 2017.  

Voting is a basic right of citizenship and an important responsibility. As the May Special District Election Day nears we want to ensure voters in Multnomah County know about the services and technology available that allow every voter to cast their ballot confidentially, independently and securely.

Voters with disabilities can request help with voting from a friend, a family member, or someone else they know.  Employers or union representatives are the only people that cannot provide assistance.  Voters can also call and request voting and elections related help from Multnomah County Elections. Elections Voter Assistance Teams can help a voter in their home, at the facility they live in, or at the Elections Office.  This help is always free.  

Voters with limited English proficiency can also request help. Multnomah County Elections provides an interpreter, free of charge to anyone who needs help in voting or elections processes in a language other than English. Telephone interpretation is available in any language and there are also multilingual elections staff.

Voters needing assistance can go online, call, email, or visit Multnomah County Elections for help in any step in voting including: signing up to vote, marking or reading the ballot, updating voter registration information, understanding elections rules and steps in voting, or any other elections related help.

Multnomah County Elections wants all voters to be able to vote easily, privately and independently, understand the steps in voting, understand elections rules, and know who to ask for help.

The deadline to register to vote in time for the May 16, 2017 Special District Election is April 25, 2017.  Register online at or fill out a paper Oregon Voter Registration Card available from the Elections Office, public library, Oregon DMV or post office.

Questions? - Contact us! If you would like more information please visit us online at, email, call 503-988-3720, or visit the Multnomah County Elections Office at 1040 SE Morrison St. Portland, OR 97214. Each voter’s situation may be different and we can help.