Sat 12 Oct is election day
Elections of members of local authorities are held once every three years, on the second Saturday in October. The next elections will be held this year on 12 October 2019.
What are we voting for?
Eligible voters choose the Ruapehu District Council mayor and council representatives for the Taumarunui/Ohura, National Park and Waimarino-Waiouru Wards. They also choose elected representatives for the National Park and Waimarino-Waiouru Community Boards.
Why your vote matters
Council is responsible for local roads, drinking water, stormwater and wastewater systems, the Transfer Station and refuse management plus libraries, local parks and reserves, environmental health, building, animal control, compliance and other services.
Other the last few years Council has also been leading economic development, township revitalisation, advocating for Ultrafast Broadband including implementing free WIFI in Taumarunui, Ohakune and Raetihi and helping to unlock over $13m in government investment in new infastructure.
As such, on a daily basis it is more than likely that Council has a greater impact on your life than central government in Wellington.
Voter enrolment and participation
Despite the Electoral Commission website showing that 82.88% of eligible Ruapehu voters were registered to vote at the last election in 2016 only 46.5% voted (NZ 42% average voter turnout).
In NZ, like much of the developed world, voter turnout has been in decline. This is something we should all be very concerned about as it is an extremely important matter for everyone committed to a democratic and pluralist society.
One group where we would really like to see a big jump in voter participation is the 18-24 age group where we have only 55.24% of people enrolled.
Think you can make a positive difference?
Nominations for people who want to stand for election open on Friday 19 July (nomination documents available 1 July).
Council is planning to hold pre-election candidate meetings in Ohakune and Taumarunui for anyone thinking about standing for election for the first time.
While being an elected member can be hugely rewarding it is also a hugely responsible role where you take part in making decisions worth a lot of money and that can have a big effect on people’s day-to-day lives.
We want to do all we can to ensure that anyone standing is properly prepared for what being elected means and has a good understanding of the commitment involved which these pre-election candidate meetings provide.
Move to STV voting
This year the voting process will be by Single Transferable Vote (STV) rather than First Past the Post (FPP) as it has been in previous elections.
You shouldn’t worry about the mechanics of STV voting as it no more difficult than FPP.
With STV instead of ticking the candidates you want to vote for, you number the candidates in order of preference by putting a "1" beside the candidate you like best, then a "2" beside your second choice, "3" by your third choice, and so on.
You can vote for as many or as few candidates as you like.
|1 July||Electoral Commission enrolment campaign starts. Nomination documents available.|
|3 July||Candidate information evening in Ohakune, 6pm|
|4 July||Candidate information evening in Taumarunui, 6pm|
|12 July||Official 3 month election period starts.|
|17 July||Public notice of election|
|19 July||Nominations open for candidates. Rolls open for inspection at council offices.|
|1, 8, 15 August||Nomination days in Raetihi|
|16 Aug||Nominations close at 12 noon. Rolls close. After this date, anyone who is entitled to vote and who is not enrolled as an elector, or whose details are incorrectly recorded on the roll, will have to cast a ‘special vote’.|
|21 Aug||Election date and candidates’ names publicised by electoral officers.|
|20-25 Sept||Voting documents delivered to households. Note: Electors can post the documents back to electoral officers as soon as they have voted.|
|24 Sept, 1, 10 Oct||Special Votes in Raetihi|
|12 Oct||Polling day — The voting documents must be at the council before voting closes at 12 noon. Preliminary results (i.e. once all ‘ordinary’ votes are counted) will be available as soon as possible afterwards.|
|17-23 Oct||Official results (including all valid ordinary and special votes) declared.|