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More Money Not Less Provided for 1999 Election

Media Statement by
Hon Tony Ryall
Minister of Justice


8 December 1999

More Money Not Less Provided for 1999 Election

“Almost $2 million extra funding has been provided for this year’s General Election compared to the 1996 election,” outgoing Justice Minister Tony Ryall said today.

“There has been some ill-informed comment that the National-led Government cut funding for this year’s General Election.

“My advice to such commentators is to be cautious because, in fact, $1.982 million extra has been voted for this year’s election.

“In developing the budget for the 1999 General Election the actual costs incurred during the 1996 election were taken as a base and adjusted for expected changes such as: two extra electorates, a greater number of polling booths, 800 additional polling place staff, and training for the significant number (around 50%) of first time returning officers.

“In addition to the $2 million extra funding a further appropriation of $570,000 was approved for the conduct of the first referendum. Both the Ministry of Justice and the Chief Electoral Office advised that this additional funding was sufficient to cover the second referendum also.

“The outgoing Government is concerned at the delay in the provision of election night results. In response an inquiry is underway into the circumstances surrounding the late announcement of election night results. However, this is an issue of counting process, not reduced resources,” said Tony Ryall.

ENDS

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