Local Government Election Reforms: What You Need To Know

Published on Wednesday, 23 August 2023 at 2:30:00 PM

Since the last Local Government elections, the State Government has made changes to the Local Government Act 1995 with the aim of ensuring Local Governments can better serve residents and ratepayers.

WATCH: Western Australia's Local Government Reforms

Several of these changes – Council representation and preferential voting – will affect the Shire of Toodyay’s upcoming Ordinary Postal Election on Saturday 21 October 2023.

Voting in Local Government elections is not compulsory in Western Australia, but all local electors are strongly encouraged to vote. If you are planning to vote in the Shire’s election this October, find out more about the changes below.


Review of Council representation

Council representation has been reduced for smaller Councils, aligning the number of Elected Members with district populations. Wards have also been removed for smaller Councils.

The Shire of Toodyay Council will be reduced from nine (9) Elected Members to seven (7). As a result, there are three (3) vacancies for the 2023 election. 


Optional preferential voting

Optional preferential voting will be available at the upcoming and all future Local Government elections, bringing them in line with State and Federal elections and restoring the right of voters to express preferences.

When filling in your ballot paper, you may select as many candidates as you like by numbering their names accordingly (e.g. 1 for your preferred candidate, 2 for your second choice and so on) or simply vote for a single candidate – it’s up to you.  

WATCH: How to vote in your Local Government Election


Have a question about the upcoming Local Government Elections or reforms? Please contact the Western Australian Electoral Commission (WAEC).


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