Electoral structure reviews

The Minister for Local Government forms electoral representation advisory panels to review the electoral structures of local councils. These reviews are known as electoral structure reviews.

Councils under review

A total of 39 local councils must have their electoral structure reviewed, and residents can have their say. The reviews will be conducted via 3 rounds within the next 18 months.

The first round of reviews will look at rural shire councils, with submissions opening in January.

Find councils under review

Why the reviews are being held

The Local Government Act 2020 (the Act) introduced several changes to local government representation. These included changes to the types of electoral structures councils can have.

From October 2024, all councils in Victoria must be structured in the following way:

Metropolitan, interface and regional city councils Single-councillor wards
Large and small rural shire councils Unsubdivided
or
Multi-councillor wards with equal number of councillors per ward
or
Single-councillor wards

Currently, the structure of 39 local councils does not meet the requirements of the Act and must be compliant for the October 2024 council elections.

To ensure all councils meet these requirements, the Minister for Local Government has formed 2 panels to conduct electoral structure reviews of the 39 non-compliant local councils over the next 18 months.

What the reviews will achieve

Rural shire councils

The panels will consider if the council:

  • has an appropriate number of councillors
  • should be one large unsubdivided area or subdivided into wards.

If subdivided, the panel will consider:

  • how many wards the council should have
  • how many councillors should be in each ward
  • the ward boundaries
  • the name of each ward

Metropolitan, interface and regional city councils

These councils must move to single-councillor ward electoral structures.

The panels will consider:

  • if the local council has an appropriate number of councillors
  • how many wards the council should have
  • the location of ward boundaries
  • the name of each ward

What happens at the end of a review

The panels will make a recommendation to the Minister for Local Government when they complete each review.

If the Minister accepts the recommendations, the changes will apply at the next general council election in October 2024.

What the reviews do not cover

An electoral structure review cannot:

  • change the external boundaries of a local council
  • divide local councils
  • combine local councils.

Have your say

Your input is valuable. As a local, you know your council area better than anyone. This is your chance to provide your views about the electoral structure that would best support representation in your community. This is known as a submission.

Check the submission opening dates for each review and each council review page for more background information on each council.

Find councils under review.

About electoral representation advisory panels

The panels are formed by the Minister for Local Government on a fixed term to carry out electoral structure reviews.

Under the Local Government Act 2020, the VEC does not conduct the electoral structure reviews, but does provide administrative and technical support to the panels. The Electoral Commissioner (or their delegate) must be a member of a panel.

The Minister has appointed the following panels to conduct reviews in 2023–24:

Panel 1

  • The Hon. Frank Vincent AO KC (Chair)
  • Ms Liz Williams
  • Electoral Commissioner Mr Warwick Gately AM

Panel 2

  • Ms Julie Eisenbise (Chair)
  • Mr Tim Presnell
  • Deputy Electoral Commissioner Ms Dana Fleming.