More than 8,300 voters had cast their ballots in the Burbank primary as of Tuesday afternoon, exceeding the total for the primary two years ago, officials reported.

The most recent confirmed ballot count does not include those that were collected from five drop-off locations late Tuesday, said Interim City Clerk Zizette Mullins.

At 9 p.m., officials were still validating signatures and had not yet started to count the votes.

Two years ago, 8,106 out of 56,239 registered voters — or roughly 14% of eligible voters — participated in the primary.

Officials this year were hoping for a 15% turnout, hoping to attract 9,300 out of roughly 62,000 eligible voters.

Burbank resident Chris Gargaro, 62, said he was disappointed at the low turnout, calling local government elections among the most important.

“The people you elect to the council are going to make decisions that are going to impact you directly,” Gargaro said, adding that he’s never missed casting his ballot since being eligible to vote. “You’ve got to trust in these people to spend the money where it needs to be spent.”

His wife, Joan Chandler, concurred.

“My parents brought me up to respect the right to vote,” Chandler said. “I always cast my vote no matter how large or small.”

-- Alene Tchekmedyian, Times Community News

Follow Alene Tchekmedyian on Google+ and on Twitter: @atchek.