Electoral Commission of SA Candidates Briefing 2014

Briefing Session for
Intending Candidates
November 2014 Council Elections
Topics include
• the election timetable
• who is eligible to be a candidate
• nomination procedures
• the publication of electoral material,
• illegal practices and complaints
Other Topics
• the mail-out and return of voting material
• the appointment of scrutineers
• arrangements for the scrutiny and count
• the vote counting system
• results and candidate returns
Election Timetable
• roll close
Friday 8 August 2014
• nominations period
Tuesday 2 September – noon, Tuesday 16 September 2014
• mail-out of voting material
Monday 20 - Friday 24 October 2014
• close of voting
Friday 5pm 7 November 2014
• scrutiny and count
from 9am Saturday 8 November 2014
Who can nominate?
• Australian citizen or
• anyone on council between 5 May 1997
and 1 January 2000
and are
• an elector for the area or
• designated person of a body corporate or
group named on council voters roll or
• person or designated person of body corporate
or group whose name omitted from roll in error
Page 10 of the Candidate Handbook
Who cannot nominate?
• a member of an Australian Parliament
• a member of council staff
• an undischarged bankrupt or person
benefiting from insolvent debtor legislation
• a person sentenced to imprisonment and is
likely to serve the sentence or remainder of
the sentence
Page 10 of the Candidate Handbook
• close 12 noon 16 September 2014
• 3 different nomination forms
– LG 3 for an elector in their own right
– LG 4 for the designated person of a body corporate
– LG 5 for the designated person of a group
Allow time for confirmation of
• allow time to lodge the nomination
• if the nomination is unsatisfactory at the close
of nominations, it will be invalid
• opportunities for corrections and amendments
can be given only until nominations close
• compulsory, must lodge at same time as
nomination form
• must be signed and dated
• 150 words maximum
• include contact details for the candidate –
either a street address (not a post office box
unless accompanied with), an email address
or a phone number
Page 13 of the Candidate Handbook
Profiles (cont’d)
• contain the statement – I take responsibility
for the content of the profile
• cannot be inaccurate or misleading
• lodge written consent if reference to another
• no dot points, underlining, capitals, different
• optional – black and white or colour
• head and shoulders only
• taken in last 12 months
• endorsed by candidate on the back
• photos in electronic format will not be
Page 15 of the Candidate Handbook
Following nominations close
• draw for position of names on ballot paper –
4pm on the day nomination close
• letter to candidates advising of results of draw
– confirmation of dates for mail-out and scrutiny and
– legislative framework relating to election material,
illegal practices and campaign returns
– scrutineer authority forms and campaign donations
Page 17 of the Candidate Handbook
Publication of Candidate
• LGA have enabled candidates to publish a
hyperlink to an external webpage or site about
yourself and your candidacy
• Information relating to this will be included in
nomination kit
• Candidates have 7 days to submit their
website address
– 12 noon, Tuesday 23 September
Candidate Statement – Instruction to candidates
contained within Nomination Kit
Information from council to
assist with campaigning
• information on the council area and activities,
services, issues
• election signage provisions
• voters roll (not electronic)
Page 18 of the Candidate Handbook
Electoral material – key points
• must contain name, address of:
– person authorising material
– printer/producer
• cannot be inaccurate/misleading
• consider mail-out of voting packs 20 October
to 24 October, when campaigning
• candidate’s responsibility to ensure material
complies with law
Page 18 of the Candidate Handbook
Illegal practices
• bribery, intimidation, violence
• candidate/scrutineer assisting a person to
vote or obtain voting papers
• disclosing how another person has voted
• dishonestly influencing/trying to influence the
result of an election or poll
• exercising a vote to which you are not entitled
• opening an envelope containing a vote (unless
you are an electoral official).
Page 18 of the Candidate Handbook
Complaints from candidates
• must be in writing and addressed to the
returning officer
• provide copies of alleged offending material,
details of locations where notices are fixed
• will be recorded as received and notification of
the receipt of complaint will be issued
• complaints will be examined during the
election period
• handled according to complaints protocol
Page 20 of the Candidate Handbook
Mail-out of voting packs
• voting packs mail-out Monday 20 October to
Friday 24 October containing:
postal voting guide
ballot paper/s
candidate profile brochure
ballot paper envelope containing a declaration flap
for elector to sign
– reply paid envelope
Page 22 of the Candidate Handbook
Return of voting material
• close of voting – 5pm, Friday 7 November
• returned material is processed daily
• ballot paper envelope must be signed
• material delivered personally to the council will
be stored in ballot boxes
• candidates cannot observe election
proceedings, must authorise a scrutineer by
completing a scrutineer form (four copies will
be forwarded after close of nominations)
• scrutineers can observe the processing of
returned voting material and the scrutiny and
count of ballot papers
• scrutineers cannot assist an elector, obtain
voting material for another person or touch
ballot papers
Page 23 of the Candidate Handbook
Scrutineers (cont’d)
• no more than 2 scrutineers per candidate at
the same time
• address queries to officer in charge, observe
scrutineering protocol
• illegal offences apply to both candidates AND
• voting closes 5pm Friday 7 November 2014
• scrutiny commences at 9am Saturday 8
November 2014
• candidates will be advised of location and time
• declaration flap removed before envelope
opened to ensure vote secrecy
• process – remove declaration flaps from ballot
paper envelopes and extract ballot papers
before commencing count
Page 25 of the Candidate Handbook
• Saturday 8 November 2014
- commence with mayoral count, then continue
with councillor counts
• 9 am Sunday 9 November 2014
- resume counting to finalise any incomplete
• all counts to 1st preferences will be conducted
• complex counts will be transferred to a central
processing centre (CPC)
• preferential vote – must mark preferences on
the ballot paper for at least the number of
candidates to be elected
– mayoral election, must mark at least 1 preference
on the ballot paper
– 3 vacancies, must mark at 1, 2 and 3
Page 25 of the Candidate Handbook
Vote Counting
• votes are counted using the proportional
representation (PR) system
• in most instances a candidate must obtain a
quota of votes to be elected
Quota from:
• 1st preference votes or
• combination of 1st preference votes and votes
transferred from either elected or excluded
• final vacancy, 2 candidates remaining in count,
neither with quota – candidate with largest
number of votes is elected
Explanation of the voting
• Refer – Candidate Handbook Page 29
• Visit – www.ecsa.sa.gov.au/flash.htm
‘how your vote counts’
• Read – ‘Proportional Representation (PR)
Count Processes and Examples on the ECSA
Conclusion of election
• provisional declaration following conclusion of
each election
• 72 hours for request for a recount
• results? Visit
• ECSA will forward a letter to each candidate to
advise election results
Queries and Questions
Queries after this meeting?
1. Check the Candidate Handbook
2. Look at the ‘Profile and Photograph
Requirements’ brochure
3. Read the Legislative Framework relating to
Illegal practices sent after nominations close
4. Contact the ECSA Deputy Returning Officer
Questions ?

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