### ODT Online Thu, 3 Oct 2013
Alarm at low voter turnout
By Chris Morris
There are calls for online voting to be fast-tracked as Dunedin City Council voting returns slump towards a record low in this year’s local body elections. The idea was raised by Local Government New Zealand president Lawrence Yule as voter returns for the DCC election crawled to 11.7% by yesterday afternoon.
With 10 days until postal voting closes at noon on October 12, the figure is well down on the same point in the past two DCC elections.
In 2010, 21.12% of voters had responded by now, and in 2007, returns stood at 18.09%. In both cases, last-minute rushes saw returns reaching 52.96% (2010) and 47.47% (2007).
However, this year’s results were shaping as a record low, at least in recent memory, although another last-minute rush was possible, Dunedin electoral officer Pam Jordan said.
Mr Yule told the Otago Daily Times the returns to date in Dunedin were a ”worry” and underscored the need to move towards online voting.
Dunedin’s results appear to be at odds with most other local authorities across Otago, where returns to date are similar to the 2010 election.
Dunedin electoral information via the DCC website:
● DCC Candidates —Mayor, Councillors, Community Boards
Posted by Elizabeth Kerr