Council elections have been postponed again, until December.
The Local Government Elections had already been postponed after not being able to go ahead last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic – for the same reason they’ve been moved from September 4 to December 4 this year.
Minister for Local Government Shelley Hancock said the decision, came after extensive consultation with and advice from the NSW Electoral Commission and NSW Health.
“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,” Shelly 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 said they have 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.
Nominations will 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.
Image credit: Newcastle City Council website