Booths will used at next coun­cil elec­tion

Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY VIEWS -

WHIT­SUN­DAY Re­gional Coun­cil will not be hold­ing a purely postal vote for the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment elec­tions of 2016.

The de­ci­sion to have next year’s elec­tion con­ducted as part of a nor­mal elec­toral process was passed unan­i­mously at last week’s Coun­cil meet­ing in Bowen.

It was also de­cided that Coun­cil’s CEO Scott Wa­ters would not be un­der­tak­ing the role of re­turn- ing of­fi­cer for the qua­dren­nial elec­tion and would ad­vise the Direc­tor Gen­eral of the Depart­ment of Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment that the ap­point­ment of this role would be de­ferred to the Elec­toral Com­mis­sion of Queens­land.

Coun­cil­lors made their de­ci­sion af­ter at­tend­ing a brief­ing ses­sion led by Act­ing CEO, Matthew McGoldrick, last month.

Mr McGoldrick ad­vised ECQ da- ta for the 2012 elec­tion showed there were 18,721 en­rolled vot­ers, how­ever only 71 per cent of vot­ers sub­mit­ted postal votes, with merely 13,412 bal­lot forms re­ceived by the re­turn­ing of­fi­cer.

He said while postal votes were be­com­ing in­creas­ingly popular, his­tor­i­cal trends demon­strated this op­tion did not cap­ture a tol­er­a­ble num­ber of votes.

His rec­om­men­da­tion was that “to en­sure a greater per­cent­age of votes are re­ceived, and to re­tain cur­rent elected rep­re­sen­ta­tion, it is rec­om­mended that the 2016 lo­cal elec­tions be con­ducted by a nor­mal elec­toral process and that Coun­cil re­mains with di­vided ar­eas called di­vi­sions”.

This was passed 7/0.

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