Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Watson Ward by-election

Voters in Watson Ward in Mornington Peninsula Shire Council will vote in a postal by-election this March.

The by-election will be held to elect a new councillor for Watson Ward, after the resignation of Councillor Paul Mercurio on Thursday 8 December 2022.

Enrolment

The roll for this by-election closed at 4 pm on Friday 20 January. 

Am I enrolled?

If you are a state-enrolled voter in Watson Ward you must vote.

Check my enrolment

If you are a council-enrolled voter in Watson Ward, we encourage you to vote but you won't be fined if you don't.

For more information about council enrolment, read Enrolling for local council elections.

I’m away or have changed address

You can apply to have your ballot pack redirected if:

  • you will be away when ballot packs are mailed (after Tuesday 28 February) or
  • your mailing address has changed since the close of roll (Friday 20 January).

If you moved within or out of Watson Ward since the close of roll you must vote or risk a fine.

Download a ballot pack redirection form.

To submit your application:

  • scan or take a clear photo of it and email it to redirections@vec.vic.gov.au
  • post it to:
    Election manager
    Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Watson Ward by-election
    c/- Victorian Electoral Commission
    Level 11, 530 Collins Street
    Melbourne 3000 VIC

Applications close at 5 pm on Thursday 9 February.

Voting

Voting in the Watson Ward by-election this March will be by post.

We will post ballot packs to enrolled voters from Tuesday 28 February to Thursday 2 March.

The ballot pack will contain:

  • a ballot paper attached to statements and photographs lodged by the candidates
  • a ballot paper envelope with a flap
  • a reply-paid envelope
  • a multi-language leaflet.

How to vote

Follow the instructions on the ballot pack to complete your vote. Make sure you post or hand-deliver it to the election office before 6 pm on Friday 17 March.

Local mail clearance times vary. Check your local mail clearance times so your vote is in the mail on time.

Who must vote (state enrolment)?

You must vote if you are a state-enrolled voter as at 4 pm on Friday 20 January.

If you do not vote, you may be fined.

Who can vote (council enrolment)?

If you are a council-enrolled voter, we encourage you to vote, but you won’t be fined if you don’t. Find out more about council-enrolled voters.

Contact Mornington Peninsula Shire Council on 03 5950 1206 if you have any questions.

I'm away or have changed address

You can apply to have your ballot pack redirected if:

  • you will be away when ballot packs are mailed (after Tuesday 28 February) or
  • your mailing address has changed since the close of roll (Friday 20 January).

If you moved within or out of Watson Ward since the close of roll you must vote or risk a fine.

Download a ballot pack redirection form.

To submit your application:

  • scan or take a clear photo of it and email it to redirections@vec.vic.gov.au
  • post it to:
    Election manager
    Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Watson Ward by-election
    c/- Victorian Electoral Commission
    Level 11, 530 Collins Street
    Melbourne 3000 VIC

Applications close at 5 pm on Thursday 9 February.

If you own more than one property in the ward

You are enrolled once and will get one vote for this by-election.

If you are a state-enrolled voter, you are enrolled at your principal address only and must vote.

If you are a council-enrolled voter with more than one address in the ward, you are enrolled once and will get one ballot pack only. Contact Mornington Peninsula Shire Council on 03 5950 1206 if you have any questions about which property you are enrolled for.

Large print or braille ballot packs

If you are blind or have low vision, you can register to get your ballot pack in large print or braille. You do not need to register again if you have registered for past elections.

To register, please call 03 8620 1222 before 5 pm on Tuesday 7 February. Late registrations cannot be accepted.

Candidates

If you wish to stand as a candidate in this by-election, nominations will:

  • open on Thursday 9 February
  • close at 12 noon on Tuesday 14 February.

How to nominate

To nominate, you must:

  • complete a nomination form
  • complete the Victorian Government’s Local Government Candidate Training. This free training takes about an hour to complete, and you’ll need to show that you've completed it within 2 years of Saturday 18 March when nominating
  • make an appointment to submit your completed nomination form in person with the election manager. The election office will open on Wednesday 8 February
  • pay a nomination fee of $250.

Candidate Helper

The Candidate Helper application is available to help you complete your:

  • nomination form
  • candidate statement
  • candidate questionnaire

Go to Candidate Helper

Watch a Candidate Helper tutorial

Information session

Prospective candidates can attend an information session at 6 pm on Monday 6 February. This information session will be held online using Microsoft Teams.

What devices can you use to participate?

  • any PC or Mac computer
  • any smartphone
  • any tablet device.

Joining the information session

A link to register for the information session will be available in the week before the event. You can join a Microsoft Teams meeting from any device, even if you don’t have a Microsoft account. For guidance, visit Microsoft support. 

Candidate statement and questionnaire

To give voters information about your background, qualifications and what you stand for, you may also provide the following:

  • candidate statement – a statement of up to 300 words
  • candidate questionnaire – responses to questions about your experience and qualifications
  • a photo.

This information will be publicly available.

Go to Candidate Helper

Watch a Candidate Helper tutorial

Candidate statements, photos and questionnaires must be submitted before 12 noon on Wednesday 15 February.

Who can become a candidate?

To learn about the nominations process you can:

Campaign donations

By law, candidates must disclose donations and gifts they receive in the lead up to a by-election. For more information, visit the Local Government Inspectorate.