AEC Annual Report 2016–17
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Support services for electoral redistributions

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Electoral divisions are periodically ‘redistributed’, or redrawn, in accordance with Part IV of the Electoral Act. The purpose of an electoral redistribution is to ensure that, as nearly as practicable, there are an equal number of electors in each electoral division for a given state or territory.

Redistributions concluded in 2016–17

As a result of the redistribution, changes were made to the boundaries of the two electoral divisions in the Northern Territory. Table 11 sets out the milestones for this redistribution process.

Table 11: Summary of electoral redistributions concluded in 2016–17
Electoral redistributions Northern Territory

Basis for AEC’s determination triggering a redistribution

More than seven years had elapsed since the last redistribution was determined. The Northern Territory retained its entitlement to two members of the House of Representatives.

Direction to commence redistribution

15 October 2015

Release of Redistribution Committee’s proposed redistribution

9 September 2016

Public input relating to the proposed redistribution

Four written objections were received between 9 September and 7 October 2016

One written comment on objections was received between 10 October and 21 October 2016

Augmented AEC activities

Inquiries held: Two submissions were made at the inquiry held in Darwin

Decision: Adopt the proposed redistribution

Announcement of decision: 7 December 2016

Gazettal of determination of names and boundaries of electoral divisions

7 February 2017

Redistributions begun in 2016–17

In 2016–17, redistributions began in Queensland and Tasmania, as illustrated in Table 12. These will be finalised in 2017–18.

Table 12: Summary of electoral redistributions commenced in 2016–17
Electoral redistributions Queensland Tasmania

Basis for AEC’s determination triggering a redistribution

More than seven years had elapsed since the last redistribution was determined. Queensland retained its entitlement to 30 members of the House of Representatives.

More than seven years had elapsed since the last redistribution was determined. Tasmania retained its entitlement to five members of the House of Representatives.

Direction to commence redistribution

6 January 2017

1 September 2016

Public input relating to the redistribution

There were 25 written suggestions received between 19 April and 19 May 2017

There were 21 written suggestions received between 2 November and 2 December 2016

Fifteen written comments on suggestions were received between 22 May and 2 June 2017

Eight written comments on suggestions were received between 5 December and 16 December 2016

Release of Redistribution Committee’s proposed redistribution

To be released in 2017–18

5 May 2017

Public input relating to the proposed redistribution

To be sought in 2017–18

Eleven written objections were received between 5 May and 2 June 2017

Eight written comments on objections were received between 5 June and 16 June 2017

Assistance provided by the AEC

The AEC provides administrative assistance to the two bodies established to conduct each redistribution:

  • The Redistribution Committee, which is responsible for making a proposed redistribution, comprises the Electoral Commissioner, the relevant Australian Electoral Officer, the Surveyor-General (or equivalent officer) and the Auditor-General of the relevant state or territory.
  • The augmented Electoral Commission considers any objections to a proposed redistribution and makes a final determination of the names and boundaries of the redistributed electoral divisions. It comprises the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, the non-judicial member of the Electoral Commission and the members of the Redistribution Committee.

Western Australia has undergone the most redistributions and the Northern Territory the least

The AEC assisted the redistribution committees for Queensland, Tasmania and the Northern Territory, and the augmented Electoral Commissions for Tasmania and the Northern Territory, by:

  • analysing demographic and enrolment data
  • facilitating the public consultation process
  • providing support for meetings
  • producing and publishing (including on the AEC website) information about the redistribution process
  • preparing legal instruments, background research papers, analysis of public submissions and material for publication in the Commonwealth Government Notices Gazette
  • preparing reports and maps.

During March 2017, the AEC placed notices advising of changes to the boundaries of electoral divisions in newspapers circulating in the Northern Territory. The AEC also sent letters to more than 1,400 Northern Territory households advising that all enrolled residents at the address were now enrolled for a different electoral division as a result of the redistribution.

Helping Tasmanians with the federal redistribution

When the Redistribution Committee for Tasmania released maps of the proposed redistribution on 5 May 2017, the information was also made available on LISTmap.

Identifying the existing federal electoral division and proposed
Identifying the existing federal electoral division and proposed electoral division for the town of Budehaven.

The Land Information System Tasmania (LIST) online map is an interactive map provided by Land Tasmania, a division of the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment.

LISTmap allows users to zoom in on any location in Tasmania and identify which local government area, existing federal electoral division, and proposed electoral division the location is in.

Individuals and organisations can then decide if they wish to make an objection to the proposal.

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