Plans for the NSW Local Government elections are in full swing with just 6 weeks to go until the 4 December poll takes place across the state.
The NSW Electoral Commission (NSWEC) will conduct the election on behalf of Council, with voting in local government elections compulsory.
Residents are encouraged to check, update or register their details on the electoral roll through the NSWEC, with the residential and non-residential rolls due to close at 6 pm on Monday 25 October.
All 7 councillor positions at Tweed Shire Council will be contested at the poll. Councillors elected in December will serve a reduced term after the 2020 election was postponed due to COVID-19. The future schedule of Council elections will not be impacted by this change and the subsequent election will proceed in September 2024.
Nominations for candidates in the election will open on Monday 25 October and close 10 days later, on 3 November. The traditional draw to determine the order of candidates on the ballot paper will be conducted by the NSWEC the following day, on Thursday 4 November at 10 am.
General Manager Troy Green said a suite of arrangements would be in place to ensure residents remain COVID-safe when they come out to vote.
“Council is supporting the NSW Electoral Commission to conduct a COVID-safe election and ensure the health and safety of our voters, candidates and election staff,” Mr Green said.
“QR code check-ins will be in place at all polling venues, larger venues have been booked to accommodate increased physical distancing spaces, face masks will be required, hand sanitiser will be available and increased cleaning arrangements employed.
“Voters will also be encouraged to bring their own pens into the polling stations to mark their ballot papers, or single-use pens will be handed out.”
A suite of more flexible voting arrangements will also be in place in keeping with the COVID-safe plan, with expanded pre-polling, iVote and postal voting options available.
Early voting or pre-polling will be available from Monday 22 November to Friday 3 December 2021. Any person enrolled to vote may vote by pre-poll.
Postal voting has also been expanded for this election. Applications for postal voting will open on Tuesday 26 October, and close at 5pm on Monday 29 November. Applications received after this time will not receive a postal vote pack.
The deadline for the receipt of postal votes has been extended to 6pm on Friday 17 December but electors should still return their postal votes as soon as possible.
Similar iVote arrangements as exist for state elections will apply for this election. To check your eligibility for postal and iVote arrangements, visit the NSWEC website.
The declaration of the poll is expected to occur between 21 and 23 December, 2021.
Key dates for the election:
Monday 25 October – Candidate nominations open, regulated period begins
Tuesday 26 October – Postal vote applications open
Wednesday 3 November – Candidate nominations close
Thursday 4 November – Candidate ballot draw is undertaken
Friday 5 November – Caretaker mode begins
Monday 22 November – Pre-polling opens, iVote applications and voting opens
Monday 29 November – Postal vote applications close
Saturday 4 December – Election day
Friday 17 December – 6pm: Deadline for return of postal votes
Tuesday 21 – Thursday 23 December – Progressive declaration of results
Tuesday 11 January – Extraordinary meeting of new Council to elect Mayor and Deputy Mayor