Local government election 2022

Every three years you get to decide who should be making decisions for the future of your city. Local government elections are happening this year – in October!

Elections are your opportunity to select a council who will have the best interests of all of our community at heart.

For help or queries, phone: 0800 922 822

Why vote in a council election?

Most of you know we look after things like your water, roading and rubbish and recycling. But, we do so much more than that! We provide libraries and community centres, give you great parks to explore, look after your furry friends, offer fantastic events like Esplanade Day and Festival of Cultures, help plan for our future and ensure Palmy continues to prosper.

Councils meet regularly (ours meets on a Wednesday) to make decisions that impact your life every day. Voting is your way to let current elected members know that you think they're heading in the right direction, or to vote for new people to become councillors who are more aligned with your way of thinking.

Who is being elected?

In Palmy, we have 16 roles up for grabs at our council:

  • the Mayor (elected ‘at large’)
  • 15 councillors (Te Pūao Māori Ward, 2 councillors city-wide or Te Hirawanui General Ward, 13 councillors city-wide)

The Te Pūao Māori ward is new for 2022.

If you want to vote for people in the Māori ward, you will need to make sure you are on the Māori electoral roll. If you voted for Māori seats in the last central government election, then you’ll be automatically enrolled into our Māori ward voting roll. If you are of Māori whakapapa and it's your first time voting, when you enrol you’ll get to choose whether you wish to go on the Māori or the General electoral roll. Have a chat with those you trust before you decide. The next time you can choose to change rolls might not be until 2024.

Manawatū-Whanganui (Horizons) Regional Council

The regional council looks after some different things to us – mainly in protecting our environment.

It has:

  • Tonga/Raki Māori Constituency (1 councillor) or
  • Palmerston North (4 councillors) General Constituency

Find out more at horizons.govt.nz

Health boards

There will be no district health board elections in 2022, while the government considers the health reforms.

Who can vote?

You can enrol to vote if:

  • you are at least 18 years old or are turning 18 by the election date
  • you are a NZ citizen, permanent resident, or resident visa holder and
  • you have lived in New Zealand for one year or longer continuously at some point.

*If you are Cook Island Māori, Niuean, Tokelauan or Australian, you can enrol to vote once you have lived in New Zealand for a year, even if you do not have residency yet.

If you are a New Zealand citizen or resident and live in Palmy you can vote for our council.

You don’t even need to own a house to vote!

To vote, your name must be on the electoral roll when it closes on Friday 12 August 2022.

Each person in your household who meets the above criteria gets their own vote.

You can check the roll from Friday 15 July 2022 to Friday 12 August 2022 at the following locations:

  • Customer Service Centre, Civic Administration Building, Palmerston North City Council, 32 The Square, Palmerston North
  • Central Library, 4 The Square (in the New Zealand and Pacific Room)
  • Libraries at Ashhurst, Awapuni, Linton and Roslyn, Te Pātikitiki and the Mobile Library.

Is it your first time voting? Or, have you changed address?

  • complete the appropriate form at any postal agency; or
  • phone 0800 ENROLNOW (0800 36 76 56); or
  • visit the Electoral Commission website: vote.nz

There’s another way you may be eligible to vote, too.

If you live outside of Palmy, but own property in Palmy you may be allowed to vote in the Palmerston North elections. Check out the Ratepayer Roll enrolment form, available at pncc.govt.nz, or by phoning 0800 922 822.

How can I stand/run for council?

We are so excited you’re thinking about that!

Nominations will open on Friday 15 July 2022 and close at noon on Friday 12 August 2022.

During this period, nomination forms will be available from:

  • Civic Administration Building, Palmerston North City Council, 32 The Square, Palmerston North
  • pncc.govt.nz
  • by calling the electoral office on 0800 922 822.

To be eligible to stand for election, a candidate must be:

  • a New Zealand citizen and
  • on the electoral roll (18 years or older) and
  • nominated by two people whose names appear on the electoral roll of the area that a candidate is standing for.

You will need to pay a $200 deposit.

A detailed candidate information handbook will be available from May 2022.

How do I vote?

It’s easy. We’ve taken care of all the hard stuff for you.

Voting packs will be sent out in the mail to all those who have enrolled from Friday 16 September 2022. You’ve then got three weeks to get your vote in (Friday 16 September 2022 to noon Saturday 8 October 2022).

To make your vote count, post your vote in a DX Mailbox or voting box station using the orange pre-paid envelope sent to you. You can also drop your completed vote at Council.

The single transferable voting (STV) electoral system will be used for the Palmerston North City Council elections, and the first past the post (FPP) electoral system will be used for the Horizons Regional Council election.

In STV everyone’s vote gets counted once, but you get to rank as many candidates as you wish. It’s a good idea to rank at least a few. Put a 1 in your top spot, then a 2, 3 and so on. That way, if your favourite candidate already has enough votes to get in, your vote won’t get wasted.

Before making your choice, you may wish to find out more about the candidates. Check out our community hui, read up on media you trust, talk to people you trust, and talk to the candidates!

It is very safe to vote in New Zealand. You do not have to tell anyone who you voted for, unless you choose to. Your vote will always be confidential.

We will have a polling place for people who need to cast a special vote at the Civic Administration Building, Palmerston North City Council, 32 Te Marae o Hine The Square, Palmerston North from Friday 16 September 2022 until midday on Saturday 8 October 2022.

To be counted, all votes must be received by noon, Saturday 8 October 2022.

Election key dates

Enrolment is open until 5pm on Friday 12 August.

Nominations for people wanting to stand are open from Friday 15 July to 12pm on Friday 12 August.

Voting packs will be sent from Friday 16 September, and voting will be open until noon, Saturday 8 October.

Preliminary results will be known early on Sunday morning, 9 October 2022, and final results will be known and announced on Thursday 13 October 2022.

You can check the results on the Council’s website or social media pages: pncc.govt.nz/elections