ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – People all around New Mexico are casting their votes on Tuesday for this year’s local elections. Poll officials say they are expecting a slower day at the polls, as many residents took part in early and absentee voting.

Election Day started off slow in the South Valley but eventually began picking up later in the morning. Residents in the area said it was just as important to vote in local elections as it was in the presidential elections. “Local is your territory. We have a responsibility for the whole community to vote for what you think is good and right for the community,” said South Valley resident Margaret Gonzales.

Within the Albuquerque city limits, residents are glad to have the chance to represent their community. “It’s important for everybody. I feel like, obviously certain people might feel intimidated by the process but I think that for the most part, I feel like the Hispanic vote has always been a strong part of what makes up the voting block here in New Mexico,” said Albuquerque resident Chris Lucero.

Story continues below

Stella Heller said that as a Native American and a Hispanic woman, she felt it was important to express the needs of her community even more so in local elections. “I think it’s important for us to voice our opinion so that we can represent it because this is our state initially,” Heller said.

Seats for Albuquerque mayor, city council, Albuquerque Public Schools Board are on the ballot this year along with a number of general obligation bonds. Polls close at 7 p.m.