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First STV poll opportunity for Wellingtonians

First STV poll great opportunity for Wellingtonians

Wellington will be the first place in the country to vote on adopting the STV (Single Transferable Voting) method. Electoral Reform Coalition (Wellington) spokesperson and city councillor David Zwartz says that this is an exciting opportunity for Wellingtonians to switch to a fairer and more democratic system of voting.

The poll will be by postal ballot. Voters will get their voting papers in the post from 8 November, and have until 30 November to fill them in and post them back.

Zwartz says that STV is a fair voting system. It means mayors are elected with majority support, gives more representative Councils and ensures that almost all votes will contribute to the final result in elections.

He says also “in 1993, voters change the Parliamentary voting system to MMP, a proportional voting system, because they recognised it as giving a fairer result. This poll gives Wellingtonians another opportunity to switch to a fairer and more representative system at a local level.”

Wellingtonians have already shown support for STV. In the 1992 referendum on different voting systems, the Wellington region gave stronger support to the STV option than anywhere else in the country.

Zwartz says that the Porirua, Kapiti, Kaipara, Marlborough, Matamata, Papakura and Chatham Islands Councils have already decided to use STV at the 2004 elections. STV will be used for all District Health Board elections.

The Coalition is planning a publicity blitz the weekend of 2-3 November in the lead-up to voting papers being sent out. Billboards will be put up, leaflets delivered to households around the city, a poster campaign launched and a roadshow has been organised to promote the benefits of STV in shopping centres around the city.

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