Time running out for council voters

WITH just under 42% of Tasmanian electors having returned their local government postal votes by mail, the remaining majority have been urged to have their say and get their votes in the mail by Monday afternoon at the latest. The Tasmanian Electoral Commission says the participation rate is “somewhat less” than at the same time two years ago, but the figures had slowly improved over the course of last week.

Derwent Valley voters remain ahead of the pack, with 45.23% of votes returned as of Friday morning. Electoral Commissioner Julian Type encouraged all electors, who had not already done so, to take the time to record their votes and post them as soon as possible to ensure they are counted. “Consider your vote right away so that you don’t miss the deadline,” Mr Type said.

This has been echoed by Tasmanian Greens MHA and former Derwent Valley mayor Tim Morris, who said a strong return of postal ballots would ensure that local councils represented the diverse needs and interests of the community.

“Local councils do more than just collect the rubbish,” Mr Morris said. “Local government plays a crucial role in the implementation of a wide range of important community and economic programs, which is why it’s important to have strong local voices on council. I’d encourage all Tasmanians to take a look at the list of candidates in their municipality and to pick the candidates they who think would best represent local community needs and aspirations.”

Mr Morris also emphasised the need for young people to have a voice on local councils. “The trend in the past has been that young people are less likely to submit a postal ballot in local council elections, which means they’re not achieving the levels of representation they deserve,” Mr Morris said.

To be counted in the election, votes must be received by the electoral office by 10am this Tuesday, October 25. This means getting them into the post tomorrow at the latest, or hand delivering them to the Derwent Valley Council Chambers (or other councils as appropriate) by 10am on Tuesday.

The Derwent Valley Council candidates are:
Councillor – nine candidates (five to be elected)

BINGLEY, Phil, of New Norfolk
BROMFIELD, Judy, of New Norfolk
COWLEY, Dane, of New Norfolk
EVANS, Martyn John, of Magra
LESTER, Chris, of Magra
McDIARMID, Mark, of Magra
NICHOLSON, Tony, of Lachlan
ROLFE, Simon, of New Norfolk
SHOOBRIDGE, Wayne, of New Norfolk

Mayor – two candidates
EVANS, Martyn John

Deputy Mayor – three candidates
LATHEY, Barry Keith

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