Councils are part of the democratic framework of Australia. The community elects their council members every four years and the next general elections happen in November 2018.
Unlike State and Federal elections, it is not compulsory to vote in South Australian council elections. However, council elections are the biggest single voluntary civic participation activity in the state with nearly 360,000 people voting in the 2014 council elections.
Another important difference from State and Federal elections is that all voting in council elections is done by post. Enrolled voters receive a voting package through the mail and return their votes in a reply paid envelope.
The voters’ roll for council elections consists of two components – the House of Assembly (State) roll, and the council supplementary roll.
If you are on the House of Assembly roll you will automatically receive a voting pack mailed to your registered address.
If you have moved house or changed your name, you need to complete a new enrolment form, available at your local Post Office or at www.ecsa.sa.gov.au
If you are not enrolled on the House of Assembly roll you may be eligible to register on the council supplementary roll if:
Under the Local Government (Elections) Act 1999, there is a requirement to purge the council supplementary roll on 1 January of every election year. All landlords, business lessees and resident non-Australian citizens are removed from the council voters roll (with the exception of City of Adelaide) and must re-enrol to be able to vote.
If you have been removed from the roll under these provisions you must re-enrol before the
roll close deadline on Friday 10 August 2018, otherwise you will not be able to vote in 2018 elections.
‘Application for enrolment’ forms will be available from your local council or the Electoral Commission of SA after 1 January 2018.
Most people who are on the council voters roll can stand for election.
Becoming a councillor is one of the most direct ways that you can influence decisions that affect the quality of life in your local area.
If you are interested in representing the people of your community on council, the Electoral Commission of SA and the LGA(SA) provide a range of resources to help you understand the role and responsibilities of being a councillor. The updated resources will be available in early 2018, however, you can find information from the 2014 elections here [https://www.lga.sa.gov.au/page.aspx?u=6867].
IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE that there may be changes to this information as a result of pending changes to the Local Government Act (1999) and the Local Government Elections Act (1999). The 2014 information should be read for background information only.
The LGA and some local councils will also run information seminars for candidates during July and August, 2018. Details will be available on the LGA website.
Nominations for the 2018 local government elections open Tuesday 4 September 2018 and close Tuesday 18 September 2018 at 12 noon. During this time, you must complete and lodge a nomination form which is available from you council and other advertised locations.
You will also be asked to lodge a 150-word candidate profile and a ‘head shoulders’ photograph which will be published on a candidates’ website.
You should refer to the 2018 candidate resources for more information about the nomination process and requirements once they become available in early 2018.
Roll close 5pm, Fri 10 Aug 2018Nominations Open Tues 4 Sept 2018Nominations Close 12 noon, Tues 18 Sept 2018Mail out of voting materials Mon 22 - Fri 26 Oct 2018Close of voting 5pm, Fri 9 Nov 2018
The rules for local government elections are set out in the Local Government (Elections) Act 1999, an act of the South Australian Parliament. To view the Act go to www.parliament.sa.gov.au
Supplementary elections are held from time to time as required under the Local Government Act 1999. Information regarding supplementary elections can be found here: Electoral Commission of SA
For further information on the 2014 Council Elections is available here.