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LGNZ Issues Challenge For Voters This Local Election

Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) is issuing a challenge to prospective voters this local election: let’s up the vote to make your voices heard, as part of our multi-faceted Vote 22 campaign.

Those enrolled to vote can expect to receive their voting papers in the mailbox from today until the 21st of September.

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Currently only four out of ten of New Zealanders vote in local elections, compared to the eight out of ten that turn out to general elections.

“There is a common misconception that local elections are just for ratepayers. That’s far from the truth,” says LGNZ’s CE, Susan Freeman-Greene.

“The decisions councils make now will have a huge impact on how future generations live, work and thrive in our communities.

“Research tells us that the younger you are, the less likely it is that you’ll be voting in a local election. That’s why boosting youth participation plays an important part in lifting our overall numbers.

“I’ve been heartened to see rangatahi take action over the issues they care about recently.

“Local elections are a great opportunity for young voters to capitalise on that momentum by having a say on who best represents them.

“Twice as many people get out to have their say when it comes to who represents them in central government. This year we want everyone to encourage one other person to vote in the local elections because we all have a role to play to ‘up the vote’.

“Our local elections are held via postal vote. Voters will need to make sure they’ve posted their free return envelope at least three working days before polls closing on the 8th of October.

“Postal voting is often seen as a barrier for young people, who are more likely to be renting and moving address more often.

“But the great thing about postal voting is that you can sit down, with a cuppa and take the time to look at all the candidates, find out what they stand for and make informed decisions.

“This year, we ask all voters to do things differently. Open up those envelopes and set aside some time to have a kōrero about the elections and the candidates with your whānau and friends,” said Susan Freeman-Greene.

If voters miss the postal cut off which is the 4th of October, they can still pop their vote into one of the many ballot boxes up and down the country by midday 8th October. They can be found in places such as supermarkets, council buildings and libraries.

Your local council website should have a list of where your nearest ballot box can be found.

This year, LGNZ has supported the roll out of an additional 412 ballot boxes across the country.

Didn’t receive your voting papers?

If you’re enrolled to vote and your details are up to date, then voting papers will arrive in your letterbox by 21 September.

If they don’t arrive, it’s not too late. Voters can visit their local council office or contact their local electoral officer to make a special vote.

© Scoop Media

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