What’s required when voting?

September 09, 2017

Given the last local government election held in Deniliquin was in 2008, the Pastoral Times has this week been receiving plenty of calls from people asking what they’re required to do.

Those voting tomorrow will have a selection of polling places in their council area or ward, which are open from 8am to 6pm.

There are 17 candidates vying for nine seats on the Edward River Council.

In ballot order, they are: Peter Connell, Margaret Bull, Mac Wallace, Andrew Howley, Jeff Shand, Nick Metcalfe, Peta Betts, Ashley Hall, Pat Fogarty, Peter McCrabb, Sue Taylor, Airlie Circuitt, Peter Robinson, Norm McAllister, Rob Sobolewski, James Sides and Norm Brennan.

There are 14 candidates across three Murray River Council wards, with three councillors to be elected in each ward.

Greater Murray candidates are Tom Weyrich, John Pocklington, Tony Aquino, Geoff Wise and Nicole Stenhouse.

Greater Wakool candidates are Ann Crowe, Alan Mathers, Katherine O’Brien, Neil Gorey and Christine Dartnell.

Moama candidates are Nicole Cohen, Geoff McKenzie, Gen Campbell and Chris Bilkey.

So, how do you vote?

Using numbers, you must rank your preferred candidates. You can choose to number all available candidates on your ballot paper, or only a few. But you must meet a minimum.

In Edward River Council, you must rank at least your top five candidates for your vote to be eligible. If you so choose, you can rank all 17, or somewhere in between.

In each of the Murray River Council wards, you must number at least two candidates. In this council area, residents only vote for the candidates standing in the ward in which they live.

So, how is your vote counted?

To be elected, a candidate must reach a votes ‘quota’. This is calculated based on the total number of formal votes received via pre-poll voting, on polling day and through postal votes.

According to the NSW Electoral Commission, the quota will be set after 6pm on Monday, September 11 — following the close of postal vote acceptances.

The count is conducted by distributing votes according to the choices shown on the ballot paper.

Any candidate who reaches the determined quota based on first preference votes — placing a ‘1’ next to your preferred candidate — will be elected. Their surplus votes above the quota are distributed to the remaining candidates as preferences on each ballot paper.

Candidates with the lowest number of votes are then excluded and their votes are redistributed according to the next choice shown on the ballot paper. This process continues until all the vacancies are filled.

Candidates can also be elected if the remaining number of candidates in the count equals the number of vacant positions still to be filled.

Where do you vote?

Pre-poll voting closes at 6pm tonight. In the ERC area, pre-poll votes can be cast at the Multi Arts Centre in Cressy St, Deniliquin.

Murray River pre-poll voting is available at the returning office at 35 Mellool St, Barham or at the Moama, Mathoura or Moulamein council offices.

For a full list of Saturday’s polling places, go to

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