Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson is urging citizens to vote in local elections next Tuesday, May 8.

Johnson says "I encourage you to cast a ballot, as you have the opportunity to be heard on issues that affect local school districts, cities and community colleges. Every vote counts, and your vote could make the difference."

Communities and school districts in 70 counties are holding local elections. In Genesee County, initiatives for Birch Run Public Schools and Fenton Area Public Schools are on the ballot.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. on Election Day and there is still time for voters who qualify to obtain an absentee ballot. Voters who qualify for an absentee ballot and wish to receive it by mail, must submit their application by 2 p.m. this Saturday, May 5th.

For more information on voting, Secretary of State locations, and additional services, visit www.michigan.gov/sos.