With just 13 days to go until nominations close, no one has yet officially put their hand up to fill the the city of Hamilton’s vacant East Ward seat.
Hamilton City Council is required to hold a by-election following the death of East Ward Councillor Margaret Forsyth in early May. Nominations for the vacant seat opened on Tuesday 25 May but to date no nominations have been received.
Council’s Governance Manager and Deputy Electoral Officer, Becca Brooke said while it is common for candidates to wait until the last few days to submit their application, it was unusual to have received no nominations just 13 days out.
“We would expect to have received a handful of candidates by now. We encourage all aspiring leaders to put their hat in the ring and help lead our city for the next 12 months,” she said.
“Yourctityelections.co.nz has everything you need to embark on a campaign. From rules around election signage, social media and how much you can spend.”
Mrs Brooke said if no nominations are received then the nomination process would start again, leaving the East Ward seat vacant for a further six to eight weeks.
“Obviously we hope that’s not the case. In fact, we hope a number of candidates come forward and share their ideas on how to help shape our city.”
Would-be candidates are warned from waiting until the last day to put their nomination in.
“Every nomination form has to be validated. If there’s any issue on the form, or we haven’t sighted proof of citizenship then the nomination will be invalid.”
To stand as a city councillor, candidates must be:
- a New Zealand citizen (by birth or naturalisation ceremony); and
- enrolled as a Parliamentary elector (anywhere in New Zealand); and
- nominated by two electors whose names appear on the electoral roll within the respective ward the candidate is standing for.
Nominations close at noon on Tuesday 22 June and postal voting will open on Tuesday 27 July. Voting closes at midday Wednesday 18 August with the final results expected to be available by 5pm that day.
Any interested candidates should visit yourcityelections.co.nz or phone the Deputy Electoral Officer on 07 838 6439.