Changes to strengthen our electoral system

The ACT Government will maximise the opportunity for participation in the upcoming ACT election, by extending the enrolment period up to and including election day so that more Canberrans can have their say.

Attorney-General Gordon Ramsay said this delivers on an election commitment and recommendations made by the Select Committee on the 2016 ACT Election and the Electoral Act.

“The changes being implemented in the Legislative Assembly today will ensure an equitable and transparent electoral process in the ACT come the October 2020 election,” Mr Ramsay said.

“This includes allowing people to enrol to vote until the close of the polls on election day so that those who turn 18 prior to polling day and those that have lived in the ACT for 30 days or more can be added to the count.

“This measure more robustly supports and recognises the right of young people, and those that have relocated to the ACT, to vote and have their say in the ACT election.

“Other important changes include increasing accountability by requiring that those responsible for authorising election materials in print or electronic form, list their full names and the entities they represent, so they can be clearly identified.

“This will allow voters to judge election material based on the credibility of the source and be fully informed when casting their votes,” he said.

The Bill will also allow for the immediate removal of electoral advertising signs from public land that don’t comply with the requirements. Previously these signs could only be removed seven days after a notice was issued. This follows community feedback on previous elections.

“The Government is committed to ensuring an equitable and transparent electoral process. These changes will further enhance public confidence in the ACT electoral process and strengthen our robust and representative electoral system,” Mr Ramsay said.

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