Casting a wide net for votes
THE ability to cast council election votes online will be discussed as part of a review of the Local Government Act, Local Government Minister David Templeman says.
The State Government began a review of what it called WA's “outdated” Act in June.
With just 27.5 per cent of eligible West Australians using their right to vote in the 2015 local government elections, ways to improve voter turnout will be explored.
Mr Templeman said allowing people to vote online would be considered under the second phase of the review next year.
“Examining ways to increase participation and public confidence in local government elections will be considered in this phase,” he said.
“Some of the options that will be explored to address this include online voting and who should conduct elections.
“On average fewer than one-third of people who are eligible cast a vote in local government elections.
“I want to explore options that will increase democratic participation.”
A discussion paper for phase two is planned for release in the middle of 2018.
It is expected to be completed in 2019.
In the meantime, phase one of the review is well underway.
The electronic availability of information, if councils are meeting public expectations for accountability and performance and red tape are being reviewed.
A discussion paper for phase one is planned for release in November.
Mr Templeman said the end result would be councils that were efficient and effective.
Local Government Minister David Templeman.