Voting officials prepare for Tuesday primary

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ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- The Virginia primary takes place on Tuesday, and several seats are up for grabs for both parties.

Albemarle County Registrar Jake Washburne was busy Monday afternoon distributing election equipment to representatives from all 30 of the county's precincts.

He said there are eight different ballot types for Albemarle County voters, depending on where they are voting and which party.

"If you are in a precinct where there is a dual primary," Washburne said, "you can choose to vote the Republican ballot or the Democratic ballot, but you cannot choose to vote both. This upsets some voters and I can understand that, but we would ask the voters not to berate our poor hard-working election officers. They didn't make the law."

Washburne said he expects about ten percent turnout on Tuesday, which is fairly typical for a local primary election.

Charlottesville has seen an increase in absentee voting. Registrar Rosanna Bencoach said the city had accepted 854 absentee ballots by 5 p.m. on Saturday. A majority of those votes were made in person. In 2015, the last time the city had a primary with three city council seats up for grabs, there was a total of 295 absentee ballots.

The winners of Tuesday's primary will advance to represent their party in the general election in November.

Five Democrats are vying for three nominations for Charlottesville City Council. The candidates include Michael Payne, Bob Fenwick, Brian Pinkston, Sena Magill and Lloyd Snook.

Patrick Estes and Chan Bryant are competing for the Democratic nomination for Albemarle County Sheriff, and Bea LaPisto Kirtley is facing Jerrod Smith for the Democratic nomination for the Rivanna District of the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors.

There are also several contested races for local state House of Delegate and Senate districts.

In Senate District 17, incumbent Bryce Reeves is facing a challenge from Rich Breeden for the Republican nomination, and Amy Laufer and Ben Hixon are competing for the Democratic nomination.

Incumbent Emmett Hanger is facing a Republican challenger, Tina Freitas, in Senate District 24.

Democrats Sally Hudson and Kathy Galvin are running for the 57th House District to replace David Toscano, who is retiring after 14 years.

Republicans John Avoli and Dave Bourne are running for the party's nomination in the 20th House District.

Polls are open on Tuesday between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m.

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