By Kent Gray

Triplicate staff writer

Today is the day for residents to cast their ballots for everyone from governor to congressman to local sheriff.

Polls open today at 7 a.m. and will close at 8 p.m., according to Del Norte County clerk-recorder Vicki Frazier. Up-to-the-minute election results will be available on the county's Web site and in the Supervisors' Chambers at 981 H Street through this evening.

Five local races will be decided today, along with several statewide races and one for the U.S. House of Representatives.

Locally, former-Sheriff Mike Ross and Crescent City Police Sergeant Dean Wilson will be contending for Del Norte County sheriff.

Two candidates are vying for Del Norte County district attorney. They are Chief Deputy District Attorney Mike Riese and Family Support Services attorney Nan Udell.

Two newcomers and one incumbent are seeking two open seats on the Crescent City City Council. Retired attorney Jack Burlake, the incumbent, is facing environmental manager Ray Martell and school administrator Dennis Burns.

Four newcomers and one incumbent are battling for two open seats on the Crescent City Harbor District's Board of Commissioners. Businesswoman Bev Noll, the incumbent, is facing off with retired undercover narcotics officer Mario Deiro, retired naval officer Daniel Kirkpatrick, former reporter and county worker Mike McKenzie-Bahr and businesswoman Kate Van Dyke.

For state Senate, Del Norte County voters will be casting ballots for Assemblymember Sam Aanestad (R-Grass Valley), businessperson Marianne Smith (D-Nevada City) or retired rancher and chiropractor Robert Underwood (L-Montague).

For state Assembly, Democrat Patty Berg from Humboldt County will be facing Republican Rob Brown from Lake County and Green Party candidate Doug Thron from Arcata.

Democratic incumbent Mike Thompson is defending his seat in the U.S. House of Representatives First District against challengers Lawrence Wiesner (R-Santa Rosa) and Kevin Bastian (L-Eureka).

There are nine statewide races in contention: governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, controller, treasurer, attorney general, insurance commissioner, state board of equalization and superintendent of public instruction.

There are seven initiatives submitted to the voters: Proposition 46, the Housing and Emergency Shelter Trust Fund Act; Proposition 47, Kindergarten-University Public Education Facilities Bond Act; Proposition 48, Court Consolidation amendment; Proposition 49, Before and After School Programs State Grants; Proposition 50, Water Quality, Supply and Safe Drinking Water Projects; Proposition 51, Motor Vehicle Sales and Use Tax initiative and Proposition 52, Election Day Registration and Voter Fraud initiative.