ROCKLAND — The number of absentee ballots requested by Rockland residents is more than 40 percent greater than in the 2018 election.

As of Friday, 1,409 residents have requested absentee ballots and 1,156 have been returned, City Clerk Stuart Sylvester said. In 2018, 987 had been requested and 958 were returned by the end of Election Day. In 2021, when there were no statewide or national races, 571 absentee ballots were cast.

The 2022 election includes the election of a governor, representative to Congress, state representative and state senator, as well as a City Council race in which four people are seeking two seats. There are also three municipal bond referendums on the ballot.

Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 8. Polls are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Flanagan Community Center. People can register on the day of the election and can return their absentee ballots until 8 p.m.

In the last gubernatorial election in 2018, there were a total of 2,607 votes (both in-person and absentee) casts for City Council when there was one seat up for election with three people vying for it. The winner that year was Ben Dorr with 1,244 votes.

The most votes that a City Council candidate has received in a contested race was in 2004 when Adele Grossman Faber received 2,155 votes, topping a field of three candidates seeking two seats. That was during a presidential election year when turnout is at its highest.

The fewest votes a candidate has received and won a seat to the City Council was in 1956 when Frederick Tripp got 361 votes and finished second when there were seven candidates for two seats.

There have been several instances when there have been no contest for a Council seat. That last occurred in 2011 when Dr. Eric Hebert and Elizabeth Dickerson ran for two seats.

The most votes that a candidate has received yet did not win a seat on the City Council is 1,371 and that has occurred twice. In 1976 Vance Johnson finished second in a two-way race for a single seat. And in 2020, Adam Lachman finished third in a five-way race for two seats. Both those years were presidential election years when turnout is higher.

There are four candidates seeking two seats this year. They are incumbent Councilor Nathan Davis, Lachman, Penelope York, and Steven MacDonald. This is the first race for York and MacDonald. Lachman ran in 2020. Davis won his first election in 2019 when he received 574 votes, finishing second in a race for two seats with four candidates.

The three municipal bond issues are $15 million for roads and sidewalks, $15 million for stormwater management projects, and $2.4 million for the landfill closure.

There are three people seeking three seats to represent Rockland on the Regional School Unit 13 Board. Jessie Davis and incumbent Jason White are uncontested for a pair of three-year seats, and Paul Coster is uncontested for a single two-year seat.