Flickr user Slices of Light

If you’re like most Americans, you probably think Election Day is some time in November. But for local contests in Los Angeles – like many other cities – elections are held at a lesser-known point on the calendar.

Now, new figures show just how great an effect election timing has on mayoral contests. On average, mayoral elections held off cycle in California have less than half the voter turnout of mayoral elections that coincide with presidential contests.