COVID-19 restrictions have once again forced the delay of the Local Government elections.
The election for all local government councils in NSW will now be held on Saturday 4 December — they were supposed to be held on Saturday 4 September.
NSW Minister for Local Government Shelley Hancock said the decision, after extensive consultation with and advice from the NSW Electoral Commission and NSW Health, has been made in response to the COVID-19 situation.
“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and current Public Health Orders impacting Greater Sydney, we have made the difficult decision to postpone the Local Government elections until later this year,” Mrs Hancock said.
“We have taken this step to postpone the election to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our communities, voters, polling staff and candidates.”
The NSW Government has worked with the Electoral Commission and NSW Health to implement a comprehensive plan to allow voters to cast their ballot safely in person, by post or online.
iVote (electronic voting) will also be available for the first time in the local council elections and the NSW Government has implemented changes to pre-poll to ensure that voters have 13 days to cast their ballot, reducing congestion on polling day.
The NSW Government has made available a total of $57 million for the elections in 2021, including $37 million to deliver them in a COVID safe way. In this election, 5.2 million voters will cast their ballots as around 5,000 candidates vie for 1,200 councillor positions across 125 local councils.
Candidate nominations will now open on Monday 25 October 2021 and close on Wednesday 3 November 2021.
Prospective candidates can find more information at the Office of Local Government website at www.olg.nsw.gov.au.
Thinking of nominating as a candidate for Kyogle Council?
If you’re considering nominating as a candidate for the 2021 NSW Local Government elections, the following information provides general guidance about the process of nominating, and candidates’ obligations and responsibilities.
Prospective candidates should seek their own independent legal advice if they are unsure whether they are eligible to run or how the law applies to their specific circumstances.
Nominate as a Councillor
To nominate as a Councillor you must lodge a nomination form, either by delivering it to the Returning Officer or by using the Electoral Commission’s online nomination system.
Nominating incorporates the following:
- Part A – Candidate details
- Part B – Nominator details
- Part C – Candidate information sheet
- Part D – Statistical information sheet and
- A nomination deposit.
Grouping of Councillor candidates on the ballot paper
Two or more Councillor candidates may form a group on the ballot paper, and where eligible, request a group voting square (box above the line) be printed on the ballot paper for the group.
In addition to lodging the nomination form listed above, these candidates must also lodge a Request to form a group form.
All candidates must pay a nomination deposit of $125 each to the NSW Electoral Commission.
Where candidates also lodge a Request to form a group, the deposit is capped at $625 for a group of five candidates or more.
If using the online nominations system, the deposit must be paid by either MasterCard or VISA.
If using paper nomination forms, the nomination deposit must be paid by cash or bank or building society cheque.
Start your nomination now
The NSW Electoral Commission’s online nominations system is now available at elections.nsw.gov.au by following this link.
You can start the process of nominating online now.
Alternatively, paper nomination forms are available by calling the Commission’s candidate helpdesk on 1300 022 011.
Lodge your nomination
Nominations can be lodged online from Monday 25 October and close 12 noon, Wednesday 3 November. Late nominations will not be accepted.
However, if using paper nomination forms, you must lodge your nomination and deposit with the Returning Officer for the Kyogle LGA. Returning Officer office locations can be found at elections.nsw.gov.au or by following this link
Registration for electoral funding purposes
NSW has strict laws that regulate the election campaign finances of political parties, candidates and groups at the election. These include requirements to operate a campaign account, and to record and disclose political donations and electoral expenditure. In addition, there are caps on political donations and electoral expenditure.
Prior to being nominated, candidates and groups can separately apply to the NSW Electoral Commission to be registered for electoral funding regulation purposes. Only once successfully registered is a candidate or group allowed to accept political donations and pay for electoral expenditure.
Forms for applying to be registered as a candidate or group are available on the Commission’s website. Online registration is also now available.
Candidate Handbook and webinars
A Candidate Handbook will be made available on the NSW Electoral Commission’s website. Educational webinars which assist candidates in navigating the process are also available.
Six steps to becoming a candidate
Familiarise yourself with the election processes and your legal obligations
Register as a candidate or group to start campaigning
Manage and record your campaign finances throughout the entire election period
Registration of electoral material (“how to vote”) to distribute on election day
Disclose political donations and electoral expenditure
You can also refer to the Electoral Commission’s Frequently Asked Questions for candidates and groups, by clicking here.
- Visit elections.nsw.gov.au
- Email the candidate helpdesk firstname.lastname@example.org
- Call the candidate helpdesk 1300 022011.
If you are deaf, hard of hearing and/or have a speech impairment, please contact the NSW Electoral Commission through the National Relay Service (NRS). Choose your access option and ask for 1300 135 736.
If you need an interpreter, please call TIS National on 131 450 and ask them to call the NSW Electoral Commission on 1300 135 736.
Local government election information
Under the Local Government Act 1993 all non-residents owners, occupiers and ratepaying lessees of rateable land in a local government area (LGA) are eligible to vote in that LGA’s elections.
If you are a non-resident owner, occupier or ratepaying lessees of rateable land in the Kyogle LGA and would like to to vote in the 4 December election, you must apply to be included on the non-residential role by 6pm 25 October 2021.
Who is eligible to be on a non-residential roll?
You must be eligible to vote at Federal or State elections to be on a non-residential roll. Your eligibility must be based on land within the council area and must not only be used as a car park.
To be on the roll of non-resident owners of rateable land, you must be:
- the sole owner of the rateable land, or
- nominated as the elector by the joint or several owners of the rateable land, or
- nominated as the elector by the corporation or trustees who own the rateable land, or
- the lessee of the land from the Crown and the land is rateable Crown land.
To be on the roll of occupiers and rate-paying lessees, you must be:
- the sole occupier or ratepaying lessee of rateable land, or
- nominated as the elector by the joint or several occupiers or ratepaying lessees of the rateable land, or
- nominated as the elector by the corporation or trustees who occupy or are the ratepaying lessee of the rateable land, and have the legal right to occupy the land, or be responsible for paying all or part of the rates on the land for three years following the date you apply to be on the roll.
Use the Form for individual owners, occupiers and ratepaying lessees or Form for nomination of an elector by joint/several, corporate or trustee owners, occupiers or ratepaying lessees to apply to be on a non-residential roll.
- Form for individual owners, occupiers and ratepaying lessees
- Form for nomination of an election by joint/several, corporate or trustee owners, occupiers or ratepaying lessees to apply to be on a non-residential roll.
Council will advise you within seven days if your enrolment has been accepted.
How can I check what roll I am on?
You can check your residential enrolment by following this link to the Australian Electoral Commission website or by calling the AEC on 13 23 26. You can contact council on 6632 1611 to check whether you are enrolled on a non-residential roll.
Important dates for the 2021 Local Government elections
Monday, 25 October 2021
- Close of electoral rolls (6pm)
- Candidate nominations open
Wednesday, 3 November
- Close of candidate nominations (12pm)
- Registration of electoral materials commences
Friday, 5 November 2021
- Caretaker period commences
Monday, 22 November 2021
- Pre-poll voting opens
Friday, 26 November 2021
- Registration of electoral material closes (5pm)
Monday, 29 November 2021
- Registration of electoral material closes (5pm)
Friday, 3 December 2021
- Declared institution voting closes (6pm)
Pre-poll voting closes (6pm)
Saturday, 4 December 2021
- Election Day 8am-6pm
Friday, 17 December 2021
- 6pm – Return of postal votes closes
Friday, 3 September 2021
- Close of pre-poll voting period.
21-23 December 2021
- Results declared progressively as counts are finalised by election manager