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Nel Benton-Hough casts her ballot into a ballot drop box outside the City Administration Building, 30 S. Nevada Ave., in Colorado Springs on Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021. Ballots must be received by 7 p.m.(Chancey Bush / The Gazette)

Do you have one of those friends who tells you they don’t vote because they don’t think their single voice matters? Well this week we got two examples of why that’s just not true.

In Idaho Springs, a quirky mountain town about 30 minutes west of Denver, residents were so sharply divided over their recent tax proposals that the most recent counts of ballots showed one passing by a single vote while another was failing by a single vote.

A proposal to redirect about $50,000 in marijuana sales taxes to the city, instead of Clear Creek County, was passing by a single vote as of the latest tallies Thursday afternoon.

And the city’s residents were just as divided on a sales tax hike to pay for water infrastructure.

A proposed 1% sales tax increase to pay for water and wastewater capital improvements was failing as of the same time with a final tally of 269 to 270.

County election offices are careful to emphasize that the vote counts aren’t final until weeks after the election, when results are certified by counties and the state, and the Clear Creek County Clerk and Recorder Brenda Corbett said there are still a handful of ballots to count.

"We always hope for big margins," Corbett said, in order to avoid an automatic recount, which requires more county resources. "Those are never fun."

Corbett said it's not clear yet whether the small number of remaining ballots will lead to large enough margins that a recount won't be required. 

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