Click on the questions below to reveal the answer. 

When is the next local government election?

The next City of Bayswater local government election will be held on Saturday 21 October 2023.

Who conducts the election?

City elections are conducted as postal elections by the Western Australian Electoral Commission (WAEC).

How can I find out more about the election?

The City has been appointed a Returning Officer by the WAEC who can be contacted for queries relating to enrolling as a candidate:

Barry Shelton, Returning Officer

Phone: 0472 713 862


For queries relating to voting, contact:

Mark Thornber, Senior Governance Advisor

Phone: 9272 0614



Karen D’Cunha, Coordinator Governance

Phone: 9208 2402


Which Elected Member positions are up for election in 2023?
  • Mayor
  • North Ward Councillor
  • Central Ward Councillor
  • West Ward Councillor
  • South Ward Councillor
Which Elected Members’ terms expire in 2023?

The following Councillor positions expire in 2023:

  • Cr Sally Palmer (Central Ward)
  • Cr Steven Ostaszewskyj (Central Ward)
  • Cr Michelle Sutherland (North Ward)
  • Cr Dan Bull (West Ward)
  • Cr Catherine Ehrhardt (South Ward)
What is the Caretaker Election Period?

The City's Caretaker Election Period Policy is put in place to avoid the Council making major decisions prior to the election that would bind an incoming Council, prevent use of public resources in ways that are seen as advantageous to or promoting the current Elected Members who are seeking re-election and ensure local government officers act impartially in relation to all candidates.

The City will enter caretaker mode from 4pm, 7 September 2023 until 6pm, 21 October 2023.

What has changed for the 2023 local government election?

Direct election of the Mayor: For the first time, the Mayor will be directly elected by the electors.

Ward boundary adjustments: There has been a minor ward boundary adjustment between the North Ward and Central Ward. Affected residents will be advised prior to the election. View the 2023 Ward Map here.

Councillor representation: As part of local government reform, the City of Bayswater was advised by then Minister for Local Government John Carey that changes to the Local Government Act 1995 would require the City to reduce its total number of Elected Members from 11 to 9. To maintain a total of 11 Elected Members at the 2023 election, Council will initially reduce the number of Councillors from 11 to 10, as the directly elected Mayor cannot also be a Ward Councillor under the reform. Council will then reduce the number of Councillors from 10 to eight at the 2025 election. This means one Councillor position will be removed from the Central Ward at the 2023 election. In the 2025 election, 10 positions will be reduced to eight by removing one Councillor position from the North Ward and one from the West Ward.

Optional preferential voting: Optional preferential voting has been introduced for local government elections. Find out more under the below section, What is optional preferential voting?

What is optional preferential voting?

This year, the State Government has introduced optional preferential voting for local government elections.

Optional preferential voting is similar to the way you vote in State and Federal elections; however, with optional preferential voting, you do not have to assign every candidate with your preference. You can vote for one, some, or all candidates on the ballot paper. With optional preferential voting, if the candidate you have given your first preference to is eliminated from the count, your vote will be redistributed to your next preference on the ballot paper. This process continues until one candidate has the majority of votes.

You will receive more information from the Western Australian Electoral Commission on optional preferential voting when you receive your voting packs.

For more information, visit the Department of Local Government's website.

How are the Mayor and Deputy Mayor elected?

For the first time, the Mayor will be directly elected by the electors. The Deputy Mayor will be elected by Councillors at a Special Council Meeting on Wednesday 25 October. This is also when any newly Elected Members are officially sworn in.

How and when will I receive my voting pack?

Election packages will be posted to electors in the metro area late September, approximately four weeks before election day.

Your election package will include ballot papers for your ward, instructions on how to vote, a list of candidates and a declaration.

You may vote at home and post the completed ballot papers directly to the WAEC using the reply-paid envelope.

If you are using the postal service, we recommend posting your completed ballot papers early in the week commencing Monday 16 October to ensure they are received in time. 

Alternatively, you can drop your completed ballot papers into the ballot box at the City of Bayswater Civic Centre reception at 61 Broun Avenue, Morley no later than 6pm, Saturday 21 October.

The Civic Centre reception is open from 8.30am to 4.30pm on weekdays.

When will the City be open on election day to accept my vote?

The City of Bayswater will be open from 8am until 6pm on Saturday 21 October 2023.

Is voting compulsory?

No. Voting in a local government election is not compulsory in Western Australia; however, all electors are strongly encouraged to vote.

Is absent or early voting available?

No. Early or absent voting is not available for postal elections. If you are going to be away at the time of the election, you will need to have someone forward your ballot voting package to you.

How do I know if I can vote?

You may have your name on the roll only once for each ward, regardless of the number of properties owned or occupied.

For the Mayoral election, a person is only entitled to vote once, regardless of whether they are on the roll for multiple wards.

A body corporate or company may have a maximum of two people on the roll as nominees of that company, regardless of the number of properties owned or occupied; however, these nominees cannot already be on the residents roll for the ward or, in the case of the Mayoral election, the district. 

Are residents automatically enrolled to vote?

You are automatically enrolled to vote if you are on the State electoral roll. The roll closes at 5pm, Friday 1 September 2023. If you are not already on the State electoral roll and meet the eligibility criteria, or if you have changed address or turned 18 years of age recently, you must complete an enrolment form. You may enrol online or check your enrolment status on the WAEC website: Check Your Enrolment.

What if I am a non-resident owner or occupier in the City?

If you are a resident in the City of Bayswater, you are likely already enrolled to vote for the ward in which you live. Check the status of your enrolment at Check Your Enrolment (

If you do not live in the City of Bayswater but own or occupy rateable property (and are on the State or Federal electoral roll), you may be eligible to vote in the City of Bayswater election by enrolling to be on the non-resident owner/occupier roll. 

For example, you may be a landlord or you may lease a property from which you run a business. 

To be considered a co-owner or co-occupier, you must be listed on the property title or lease (tenancy agreement, licence to occupy or other legal instrument) to be eligible to go on the owner/occupier roll. You must also have a right of continuous occupation (for example, a three-month lease or longer).

What if I am part of a corporate body?

A corporate body or a body corporate is a separate legal entity. It may be a business that has been incorporated (Pty, Ltd), an incorporated association or a strata.

A corporate body can nominate up to two nominees to vote on behalf of the entity. 

For a corporate body, you can nominate someone (who is not already on the residents roll, or the owner/occupier roll, in a different capacity) to vote on behalf of the corporate body by filling out this form: Enrolment Eligibility Claim Corporate Body. This person must be eligible to vote (i.e. on the State/Federal electoral roll).

What if I am a director or secretary of a company?

A corporate body that owns or occupies rateable property may nominate two people who are on either the State or Federal electoral roll to enrol as owner/occupier electors by filling out this form: Enrolment Eligibility Claim Corporate Body.

Non-resident owners and occupiers only can fill out this form: Enrolment Eligibility Claim

Specific enquires can be directed to the Rating Services team on 9272 0922.

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