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Local Government Act 1993 No 30
Current version for 25 June 2019 to date (accessed 23 September 2019 at 08:19)
Part 3 Expressions of community opinion
Division 1 Council polls
14 Council polls
A council may take a poll of electors for its information and guidance on any matter.
Division 2 Constitutional referendums
15 What is a constitutional referendum?
A constitutional referendum is a poll initiated by a council in order to give effect to a matter referred to in section 16.
16 What matters must be dealt with at a constitutional referendum?
A council may not do any of the following unless approval to do so has been given at a constitutional referendum:(a) divide its area into wards or abolish all wards in its area,(b) change the basis on which the mayor attains office (that is, by election by the councillors or by election by the electors),(c) increase or decrease the number of councillors in accordance with the limits under section 224,(d) change the method of ordinary election of councillors for an area divided into wards.(e) (Repealed)
17 What is the effect of a constitutional referendum?
(1) The decision made at a constitutional referendum binds the council until changed by a subsequent constitutional referendum.(2) However, such a decision does not apply to a by-election held after the constitutional referendum and before the next ordinary election.
Division 3 General provisions concerning a council poll or constitutional referendum
18 What provisions apply to the conduct of a council poll or constitutional referendum?
Part 1 and Part 6 (except Divisions 3, 4 and 5) of Chapter 10 (How are people elected to civic office?) apply to a council poll, and Part 1 and Part 6 (except Divisions 3 and 5) of that Chapter apply to a constitutional referendum, with such modifications as may be necessary, in the same way as they apply to an election.Note.Part 1 of Chapter 10 identifies the people who are entitled to vote in council elections, and Part 6 governs the conduct of those elections.Division 3 of Part 6 of that Chapter deals with nominations for election, Division 4 with failure to vote and Division 5 with miscellaneous matters such as irregularities of form or procedure in elections, overdue elections and those declared void.
19 Day for taking council poll or constitutional referendum
A council poll or constitutional referendum may be taken on any Saturday, including the Saturday of an ordinary election.
20 When is a question at a council poll or constitutional referendum carried?
(1) The question at a council poll or constitutional referendum is carried if it is supported by a majority of the votes cast.(2) The reference to votes in subsection (1) does not include a reference to any vote that, pursuant to the regulations, is found to be informal.
Expressions of community opinion
Types of expression
Question to be determined
• Creation or abolition of all wards
• Change in the way in which the mayor is chosen
• Change in number of councillors
• Change in the way councillors are elected for an area divided into wards
Result of Poll
Council chooses whether or not to proceed
Change must proceed
Change cannot proceed until passed by a later constitutional referendum