Local Government Candidates

The Commission and the Department of Local Government and Communities have publications which provide detailed information for candidates who wish to nominate for a local government election. This information is provided to all candidates in the Candidate’s Pack.

Eligibility to nominate

Under the Local Government Act 1995, to be eligible to nominate as a candidate for a local government election, the candidate must be an elector of the district (residential or owner/occupier) and over 18 years of age. A person cannot nominate as a candidate if they:

  • are a member of the Legislative Assembly, the Legislative Council, the House of Representatives or the Senate (or has been elected as such a member but has not yet taken office)
  • are a member of the council of another local government
  • are an insolvent under administration
  • are in prison serving a sentence for a crime
  • have been convicted of a serious local government offence within the last 5 years (unless the court waived the disqualification)
  • have been convicted on indictment of an offence for which the indictable penalty was, or included:
    • imprisonment for life, or
    • imprisonment for more than five years.
  • are subject to a court order disqualifying him or her from being a member of a council because he or she has misapplied local government funds or property.

Nominations

To nominate as a candidate for a local government election, the candidate must make a valid nomination application. This consists of:

  • a completed nomination form - For elections being run by the WAEC, it is recommended that candidates use Nomination Builder to complete their nomination form and construct their candidate profile.
  • a candidate profile (150 words maximum)
  • a deposit of $80
  • a photograph (optional).

All nomination applications must be signed by the candidate in front of a witness.

The nomination application must be presented to the Returning Officer at a pre-arranged appointment before 4.00pm on the day of close of nominations, 37 days before election day.

As the Returning Officer may ask candidates to amend their nomination, it is recommended that candidates ensure that they have allowed sufficient time to finalise any required changes prior to the close of nominations.

Returning Officers

Returning Officers are responsible for the conduct of an election, including the nominations process. They are usually the first point of contact for any enquires relating to the election.

Agents

A candidate may appoint an agent to submit their nomination using a form.

LG09 - Nomination for Election by Agent (PDF, 40 kB)

Scrutineers

A candidate may appoint a scrutineer to represent them in various stages of the election process.

Information for Scrutineers (PDF, 180 kB)
LG18 - Appointment of scrutineer (PDF, 66 kB)

Authorisation of Election Campaign Material

A common area or concern for some candidates relates to the authorisation of election campaign material. It is important to note that any material “that is intended, calculated or likely to affect voting in an election” is required to be authorised.

The requirements relating to the authorisation of election material apply irrespective of who is publishing the material and whether it is in printed or electronic form.

Any electoral advertisement, handbill, pamphlet or electoral notice (other than an advertisement in a newspaper announcing the holding of a meeting), letter or article must have at the end of it, the name and physical street address (not a PO Box number) of the person authorising it. If the material is printed in hard copy, then it must also include the name and place of business of the printer at the foot of the material. This applies unless the advertisement is in a newspaper (in which case the printer is obvious and contactable).

If election material is produced and printed by the one person (eg. using a home computer and printer), then the legislative provisions are satisfied by adding ‘Authorised and printed by (name), (address)’ at the end of it.

Certain small items of a candidate or party promotional nature are exempt from the requirement to carry the authorisation and addresses. These include:

  • T-shirts, lapel buttons, lapel badges, pens, pencils or balloons
  • Business or visiting cards that promote the candidacy of any person in an election.

Disclosures

Candidates have a duty of disclosure of electoral donations. Candidates and donors are required to disclose any electoral related gifts promised or received within the six months prior to polling day.

LG09A - Disclosure of Gifts (PDF, 23 kB)

All queries should be directed to the local government’s Chief Executive Officer.