Coun­cil va­cancy

The Tatura Guardian - - News -

As re­ported last week, an ex­tra­or­di­nary va­cancy has oc­curred in Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil fol­low­ing the res­ig­na­tion of coun­cil­lor Michael Polan.

The va­cancy will be filled through a count­back of votes from the Oc­to­ber 2012 gen­eral elec­tion. Vot­ers do not need to vote again in a count­back.

Vic­to­rian Elec­toral Com­mis­sion re­turn­ing of­fi­cer Mick Bas­tian said last week, count­backs were used to fill va­can­cies in multi-coun­cil­lor wards and un­sub­di­vided mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties if a coun­cil­lor leaves of­fice be­fore a sched­uled gen­eral elec­tion.

‘‘Those can­di­dates who were un­suc­cess­ful at the gen­eral elec­tion and are still el­i­gi­ble to be elected will be in­cluded in the count­back,’’ he said.

‘‘Only the bal­lot pa­pers that elected the coun­cil­lor who has left of­fice are in­cluded in a count­back.’’

The count­back will take place at 2.30 pm on Mon­day, July 6 at the coun­cil board room, Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil Of­fices, 90 Wels­ford St, Shep­par­ton.

El­i­gi­ble can­di­dates may ap­point scru­ti­neers to at­tend and ob­serve the count­back.

The re­sult will be pub­lished online at vec.vic.gov.au and also in lo­cal news­pa­pers fol­low­ing the count­back.

More coun­cil­lors?

The VEC has rec­om­mended in­creas­ing the num­ber of coun­cil­lors for Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil.

The fi­nal re­port for the Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil elec­toral rep­re­sen­ta­tion re­view was re­leased last Wed­nes­day.

In it, the Vic­to­rian Elec­toral Com­mis­sion put for­ward a rec­om­mended elec­toral struc­ture for the mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

The re­port has been for­warded to the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Min­is­ter Natalie Hutchins for her con­sid­er­a­tion.

The VEC rec­om­mends Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil con­tains nine coun­cil­lors elected from an un­sub­di­vided mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

This is a change from the ex­ist­ing ar­range­ment of seven coun­cil­lors elected from an un­sub­di­vided mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

Elec­toral Com­mis­sioner War­wick Gately said all in­for­ma­tion, in­clud­ing public sub­mis­sions, was care­fully con­sid­ered by the VEC to reach this rec­om­men­da­tion.

He said the VEC be­gan the re­view in Fe­bru­ary, hold­ing two rounds of public sub­mis­sions, a public in­for­ma­tion ses­sion and a public hear­ing dur­ing the process.

The VEC re­searched key fea­tures of the mu­nic­i­pal­ity and care­fully con­sid­ered public sub­mis­sions in mak­ing its rec­om­men­da­tion.

If the VEC’s rec­om­men­da­tion is ac­cepted, changes to the num­ber of coun­cil­lors for Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil will take ef­fect at the next coun­cil gen­eral elec­tion in Oc­to­ber 2016.

The fi­nal re­port is avail­able from the VEC by vis­it­ing vec.vic.gov.au or phon­ing 131 832.

Copies are also avail­able for in­spec­tion at Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil of­fices.

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