OGDEN -- In a year of only municipal elections, when voters were not expected to show up in great numbers, a political science associate professor from Weber State University says her interest was sparked by a 41.2 percent turnout in the Hooper race Tuesday.
And Leah Murray said that such a turnout translating into the incumbents being booted out of office was not surprising.
"They were enough upset that it led to people showing up to vote," she said.
"Lower voter turnout usually helps incumbents, (as) people who show up are satisfied. Incumbents are working for them."
In Hooper, two incumbents running for city council seats were defeated.
However, at the city offices where votes were cast, yellow signs alerted voters that incumbent Richard Hull had dropped out of the race and votes for him would not be counted. Still, they were reported online by Weber County.
Also, Hooper City Council Chairman Jared Preisler was handily defeated in the race for mayor by former Councilman Korry Green, who received 971 votes to Preisler's 415 in unofficial results.
Considering that Hooper residents showed up in considerably larger numbers in the 2008 and 2010 elections, Green said he thought the city would have even more voters Tuesday.
"Hooper is a great community, because citizens care about where they live," he said.
"There is always an outpouring of support and volunteers for our community celebrations. It is not surprising that we would have a big voter turnout because of the civic-mindedness of our citizens."
Preisler said he was impressed with the voter turnout, which he said was more than double the number that voted in the primaries. He hopes the large turnout is a sign of more participation in city government in the future.
"It is great to see that many people involved in the government process," he said. "I had a lot of people tell me that they voted for the very first time in their life."
But Preisler said he hopes such involvement doesn't stop with the election.
"People need to continue to be involved," he said, adding that residents can get involved by helping with city celebrations and attending city council meetings, among other opportunities.
"It doesn't stop on election night," Preisler said.
Next in line for high voter turnout locally was Kaysville, with 27 percent.
On the flip side, Roy and South Ogden each experienced voter turnout below 10 percent. In those cities, incumbents were elected.
Although Hooper had the highest voter turnout of all Top of Utah cities, it was not the only city that showed incumbents the door.
Voters in North Ogden did that early, eliminating two incumbents in the Sept. 13 primary election.
Councilwoman Martha Harris barely survived the primary, finishing sixth among six candidates for the general election, and removed herself from the race in early October.
"It was a bad year for incumbents this year," Murray said. "It was a bad year last year."
She said the fact that the economy is not doing well has moved Americans to being "super-enlightened" regarding the national political situation.
"We're all angry. That shows itself in getting out to vote."
In Weber County, incumbents were let go as often as they were kept.
In Farr West, only one incumbent ran in a race with six candidates and three open seats. That incumbent, Ava Painter, was defeated.
In Pleasant View, only one incumbent, Todd Walker, was on the ballot. He was defeated.
In Brigham City, incumbent Robert J. Marabella was defeated in a race in which two incumbents were among those vying for three open seats.
Davis County's biggest incumbent ousting was in Syracuse. Six candidates fought for three open seats, and all three incumbents -- Douglas Peterson, Alan Clark and Matthew D. Ocana -- were voted out.
However, provisional ballots have yet to be counted, and Peterson, with 974 votes, was behind Daniel Schuler by only four votes as of Tuesday night.
In Bountiful, also in Davis County, one incumbent was let go, but two were elected.
With three open seats in Clearfield, one of two incumbents won. The same story played out in Sunset.
One of three incumbents was let go in Layton.