Skip to content

Choosing the Council's electoral system

Choosing the Council's electoral system

Updated 2 February 2017 11:40am


Under the Local Electoral Act 2001, the Council can either:

  • resolve to change the electoral system to be used at the next two elections, or
  • conduct a binding poll on the question.

Alternatively, electors can demand a poll on which electoral system is to be used.  A poll can be initiated by at least five per cent of electors signing a petition demanding that a poll be held on the matter. The result of the poll is binding. Councils must give public notice of the right of five per cent of electors to demand a poll on the future electoral system for the next two triennial elections.  If a council resolution on the electoral system has been made before the notice is published, then this must be included in the notice.

If there is a poll to choose the electoral system, the electoral system that is chosen must be used for at least two triennial general elections. If the Council resolves to change the electoral system then the Council’s decision takes effect until a further resolution is made by Council or a poll of electors is held.

The Council last reviewed its electoral system in 2011, and resolved to change from the First past the post system to the Single transferable vote system. A copy of the report pertaining to this decision is available here. Council can resolve to either change the system for the 2019 elections or to conduct a poll, or electors could demand a poll. Click here for more information on initiating a poll.