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2020 Territory Election: Newsletter No.02

New disclosure requirements

From 1 January, 2020 a new regime for political donations and electoral expenditure requirements will come into force.

Under the amendments, candidates, parties, associated entities and third party campaigners will be required to submit returns that will be made public. January 1 will also signal the start of the 'expenditure cap' period.

For the 2020 election, candidates and political parties will have a $40,000 per electorate cap placed upon them.

For example, in the 2020 August election political parties who run candidates in all 25 seats will be able to spend a total of $1 million on their campaign. Non-endorsed candidates will have a cap of $40,000.

The Johnston by-election next year will be the first election where the cap will be in force. Parties and candidates will be able to spend up to $40,000 on the by-election. This amount will not counted toward their August 2020 election expenditure cap.

Read the information sheets about the changes to disclosure laws in the Northern Territory.

2020 Johnston by-election

The announcement by the member for Johnston that he intends to resign on 31 January 2020 means a by-election needs to be held for the division to fill the vacancy before the next general election in August 2020. Read more about the by-election process.

Return to full preferential voting

Changes to legislation in 2018 will see voting at the 2020 Territory election return to a full preferential system. The full preferential voting system requires voters to number every box in order of their preference.

The optional preferential system used in the 2016 election which allowed voters to mark one, some or all the boxes on their ballot paper will no longer be valid.

NOTE: The voting system at the Johnston by-election is full preferential.

Prohibition zones

The blanket 100 metre exclusion zone for political campaigning on voting days has been changed for the 2020 Territory Election.

  • Early voting centres and remote mobile voting revert to 10 metres from the entrance to a voting centre or location.
  • Election Day voting centres will prohibit campaigning within 100 metres from the entrance to the voting centre or to an area as prescribed by the Electoral Commissioner. As an example, where a voting centre is at a school, the Commissioner may determine that campaigning is prohibited on the entire school grounds.
NOTE: There will be a marked-out area within the 100 metre exclusion zone where limited campaigning will be permitted.

Australian Electoral Commission remote enrolment program

The Australian Electoral Commission is conducting roll integrity checks in remote areas of the Northern Territory as part of its regular roll management program.
In remote communities enrolment transactions are often undertaken manually which makes it difficult to confirm roll details at the time.
This may lead to electors being placed on the roll more than once due to the different Aboriginal naming conventions or if a person has changed their name.
By using data from the Department of Human Services, the AEC is able to cross-check elector details to identify those who may be on the roll more than once.
As a result of the AEC work to date, about 170 duplicate electors have been identified.
The duplicate details for those electors have now been removed from the electoral roll.

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NT Electoral Commission · Level 3, TCG Centre · 80 Mitchell St · Darwin, NT 0800 · Australia