The NSW Local Government Elections have been delayed by 12 months including here in the Upper Hunter.
Today the NSW Government made the decision to postpone the elections that were set to happen in September.
"The NSW Government has made the regrettable decision to postpone the September local government elections for 12 months in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic," said Minister for Local Government Shelly Hancock on her Facebook page.
"Local government elections are a vital part of the democratic process, ensuring local councils are accountable to their local communities."
"Therefore, the decision to postpone them has not been taken lightly but is necessary to ensure the health and safety of voters, NSW Electoral Commission staff and election candidates," she said.
The elections being postponed until September 2021, doesn't change the future of council election scheduled in September 2024.
"Current councillors and popularly elected mayors will continue to hold their civic offices until the rescheduled local government elections are held."
"Mayoral elections will need to be held for mayors elected by councillors in September 2018 when their two-year terms expire this year. Mayors elected in September 2019 will continue to hold office until September 2021 once the new election date is gazetted," said Shelly Hancock.
Upper Hunter MP Michael Johnsen said the decision provides some continuity for the Muswellbrook, Upper Hunter Shire and Singleton communities.
"The NSW Parliament passed legislation to allow an extension of the Local Government term to ensure we remain focused on the health of our citizens,"
"This provides both continuity and certainty for all communities," he said.