Council elections were held on 24 October 2020 when councillors were elected to form the Mansfield Shire Council for the 2020 - 2024 period.
Local Council general elections are held every four years and councillors make decisions on a range of important local issues and services, including:
- Maternal Health and Childcare
- Sporting and Recreation Facilities
- Libraries and Community Centres
- Animal Registrations
- Rubbish and Recycling
- Planning and Building Regulations
- Local Roads and Footpaths.
The Victorian Electoral Commission conduct elections on behalf of all Victorian councils.
For detailed and up to date information about how to enrol, vote, become a candidate, and more, visit the Victorian Electoral Commission website, or call the VEC on 131 832.
Entitlement to vote
The Local Government Act 2020 states that a person can only be enrolled on the voters' roll of a Council if the person is a resident in the municipal district of the Council or a ratepayer to the Council exercising an entitlement under and in accordance with the Act.
No matter how many entitlements you have within any one local council area, you are entitled to be enrolled for one vote for each council that you have an entitlement.
Voting entitlements are also hierarchical, so if you own or occupy multiple properties within a council, you must be enrolled under the first entitlement category that applies to you. If you have a number of properties within a council area under the same entitlement category, you may nominate which property you wish to be enrolled for. If it is an automatic entitlement and you do not nominate which property to express the entitlement, the council may do this for you by comparing the value of each property.
There are five categories of people who are entitled to vote in Council elections:
Everyone who has enrolled to vote in State and Federal elections is automatically enrolled to vote in the Council elections where they live. This includes Australian citizens aged 18 and over who have lived at their current address for at least one month. Voting is compulsory for this category of voter.
Owner Ratepayers (Non-Resident Owners)
Specific, individual non-resident owner ratepayers who were:
- Previously automatically enrolled on the last voters’ roll for the Council, and
- Continue to be entitled to be enrolled.
People in this category are encouraged to vote, but it is not compulsory.
Owner Ratepayers (Non-Citizen Resident Ratepayers)
People who are not Australian citizens, but own and reside in a property in Mansfield Shire, and are aged 18 or over, can apply to be enrolled on the voters’ roll. Up to two owners per property may apply. People in this category can apply to Council to be included on the roll and are encouraged to vote, but it is not compulsory.
This is an ongoing entitlement and does not expire at the close of the roll for the next general election. Entitlement remains until actively resigned.
Application form(PDF, 101KB) for this category (section s242 Local Government Act 2020).
Up to two occupiers of a property may apply to be enrolled in place of the owners if they pay the rates and have written agreement from the owners, or if the Council rates notice is addressed to them. Occupiers of shops and commercial industrial properties are encouraged to be enrolled and vote (provided the above applies) but it is not compulsory.
Application form(PDF, 102KB) for this category (section s244 Local Government Act 2020).
Corporations (Company Directors/Secretaries)
A corporation which owns or occupies a property in the municipality and which pays rates, may appoint a director or company secretary to represent it on the voters’ roll. The person it appoints cannot be otherwise eligible to vote in the municipality.
A person can only have one vote in the Mansfield Shire Council elections, irrespective of how many properties they own or occupy within the municipality.
Application forms for this category (section s245 Local Government Act 2020) can be found here for corporation owner(PDF, 90KB) and corporation occupier(PDF, 89KB)
The 2020 elections for all Victorian councils were conducted by the Victorian Electoral Commission (VEC). Further information is available on the VEC’s website.
Standing for Council
The decisions of councils affect the lives of everyone in our community. Becoming a councillor is a great hands-on way to serve your community and positively influence future directions and outcomes for your municipality.
Mansfield Shire Council has five councillors elected for a four-year term that work in a style that reflects a board of directors.
Councillors are responsible for setting policy and providing vision and strategic direction to the organisation. Councillors meet regularly through briefings and officially as the council at monthly scheduled meetings.
Standing for election provides a great opportunity to influence the future direction of the local community and to help those who require support.
Mandatory Candidate Training
Under the new Local Government Act 2020, candidates will have to undertake mandatory candidate training when considering standing for Council which will help candidates understand what is involved in becoming a councillor.
Candidates must complete the course to be eligible to nominate with the Victorian Electoral Commission. This includes all serving or former councillors intending to nominate.
The course ensures candidates fully understand the role of a councillor and its requirements.
Who qualifies to be a councillor?
The Local Government Act 2020 (the Act) lists the qualifications to be a councillor and the electoral provisions for being on the voters roll. View the act here.
How can I nominate for council elections?
Candidates are required to nominate with the Victorian Electoral Commission. The Local Government Act 2020 requires candidates to nominate in person. Nominees must make an appointment with their local Election Office.
Read the Victorian Electoral Commission's 'Becoming a council election candidate' on their website here and see their 'candidate handbooks' here.