ACT Legislative Assembly electoral boundaries redistribution – public suggestion period likely to commence 5 February 2019

Published 14 Nov 2018

“The ACT’s Electoral Act 1992 requires the ACT Electoral Commission to begin a redistribution of ACT Legislative Assembly electorates as soon as practicable after the beginning of the period two years from the next ACT Legislative Assembly election. For the 2020 ACT election that date was 20 October 2018”, ACT Electoral Commissioner, Mr Damian Cantwell, said today.

“To commence the redistribution process, the Electoral Commission formally established the Redistribution Committee on 26 October 2018. The Redistribution Committee consists of the Electoral Commissioner; the Planning and Land Authority, Ben Ponton; the ACT Surveyor-General, Jeff Brown; and the Director of Demography, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Ms Beidar Cho”, Mr Cantwell continued.

“The ACT Redistribution Committee met for the first time on 5 November 2018,” Mr Cantwell said.

“The next step in the process is to invite ACT residents to suggest how Legislative Assembly electoral boundaries for the 2020 ACT election might look. It is very important that the public are provided a full, fair and transparent period in which to offer boundary and naming suggestions, and comments upon those suggestions. Therefore the Committee has decided to conduct the initial public consultation when the majority of ACT residents will have returned from Christmas holidays. Accordingly, it is anticipated that the public suggestion period will commence on Tuesday 5 February 2019”, Mr Cantwell said.

An official notice, inviting suggestions for boundaries and names for the ACT’s electorates is likely to be published in the Canberra Times on 5 February 2019.

Any interested persons or organisations will then have 28 days to make suggestions to the Redistribution Committee.  Those suggestions will then be made available for public comment, at which point the public will have a further 14 days to make comment upon those suggestions.

After considering the public submissions, the Redistribution Committee will publish a proposed redistribution of the ACT into five electorates.  People will then have another 28 days in which to object to the proposed boundaries.

The ACT Legislative Assembly consists of 25 Members elected in 5 electorates, with 5 Members representing each of the current electorates of Brindabella, Ginninderra, Kurrajong, Murrumbidgee and Yerrabi.

“One key requirement for the redistribution will be ensuring that electoral enrolments in each electorate will be within +/- 5% of the quota at the time of the next election.  The quota for each electorate is 1/5 of the ACT total enrolment”, Mr Cantwell said.

When redrawing the electoral boundaries, the Redistribution Committee is also required to take account of the community of interests, including economic, social and regional interests; means of communication and travel; the physical features and area of each proposed electorate; the boundaries of existing electorates; and the boundaries of suburban divisions and sections.

Complete electoral enrolment statistics and further detailed information will be available from the ACT Electoral Commission’s once the public consultation period commences in February 2019.