Council candidates face regulations

By SALLY GORDON

CANDIDATES running in the Clarence Valley Council election in March will have to abide by stringent new regulations.

On March 5, Clarence Valley ratepayers will hit the polling booths to vote in a nine-member council.

State Electoral Office acting manager for elections Greg Copson said anyone who intended to hand out how-to-vote material on polling day, whether they were a candidate or a member of the public, now would have to register how-to-vote material with the electoral office.

"If it's not registered and approved by us it's an offence to hand out on polling day," Mr Copson said. He also said the State Electoral Commissioner could not register material to be handed out on polling day unless it adhered to a certain format.

"To demonstrate above-theline voting it must show preferences for at least two groups above the line and similarly below the line it has to show preferences for at least nine candidates because there are nine (councillors) to be elected," he said.

Changes to postal voting also have been brought in.

In previous elections completed postal voting had to be received by the returning officer by 6pm on polling day. The date now has been changed to 6pm on the Mon- day after polling day.



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