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Voter turnout in Boston City Council preliminary still light as afternoon goes on

The slow pace of voting in the preliminary election for three Boston City Council seats had picked up by this afternoon, but only slightly.

By 3 p.m., 8 percent of voters had cast ballots.

Voters at polls in all three districts cited the city’s schools, parking and crime as the issues that brought them out to cast ballots.

“I work for the schools, so the budget and closings are a big concern,’’ Eleanor Adams said as she cast her ballot at the West 9th Street Senior Center in South Boston. “But since it’s a local election, things like keeping the streets clean are important for me.’’

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Candidates are vying for three district seats on the council. District 2 includes South Boston, Chinatown, and parts of the South End, Dorchester, and Roxbury. District 3 is based in Dorchester. And District 7 consists of Roxbury and parts of the Fenway, the South End, and Dorchester.

The top two vote-getters in each district will square off Nov. 8.

In District 7, incumbent Tito Jackson– who succeeded disgraced councilor Chuck Turner earlier this year — faces three challengers, Althea Garrison, Roy Owens, and Sheneal Parker.

Mwagale Babumba, 30, was greeting voters outside the Yawkey Club, on Warren Street in Roxbury today, asking them to support Parker. Nearby, a Jackson supporter also held a sign.

Turnout was light early in the day at the Yawkey Club, but both campaigners were hopeful activity would increase in the afternoon goes on.

“It seems like it will pick up when people get out of work,’’ said Babumba, a Fenway resident who said she lives across the street from Parker.

In South Boston, District 2 incumbent Bill Linehan and challenger Bob Ferrera, a neighborhood activist, were using campaign trucks to drive around the district and spread their message. Educator Suzanne Lee is also vying for that seat.

In District 3, the departure of longtime member Maureen E. Feeney has created a seven-way battle between Frank Baker, Doug Bennett, Stephanie L. Everett, Craig M. Galvin, Martin J. Hogan, John K. O’Toole and Marydith E. Tuitt.

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Learn more about candidates in these districts by going to www.boston.com/yourtown and clicking on your neighborhood.

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