I give notice of my intention to issue the writ for a by-election to be held on 4 July 2020 for the electoral division of Eden-Monaro in the State of New South Wales to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of The Hon Dr Mike Kelly AM.
In normal circumstances, the Australian Electoral Commission advises that it is preferable not to have elections during school holidays.
With the current challenges created by the Coronavirus pandemic, the advice is different on this occasion.
The AEC has undertaken extensive consultations, including with the New South Wales Department of Education, because a significant number of polling places are located at schools.
As a result, the AEC has advised me that it is preferable to have a polling date where students and staff do not return to school on the very next Monday. This will then enable a thorough sanitizing clean after the completion of voting and counting at polling booths at New South Wales schools.
Whilst I could issue the writ today, I have decided to issue it this Thursday to give the AEC a few more days of preparation before the by-election timetable begins, and to enable them to consult with relevant stakeholders about the conduct of the by-election during this time.
The dates in connection with the by-election will be fixed as follows:
Issue of writ Thursday, 28 May 2020
Close of rolls Thursday, 4 June 2020
Close of nominations Tuesday, 9 June 2020
Declaration of nominations Wednesday, 10 June 2020
Date of polling Saturday, 4 July 2020
Return of writ On or before Saturday, 5 September 2020