The Northern Territory Electoral Commission has released its first draft of the Territory’s new electoral boundaries. The boundaries are now open for public comment. Once the redistribution is finalised, the new boundaries will apply for the next Northern Territory election in August 2024.
Those who have been paying attention will know this is actually the second time a first draft set of new boundaries has been released. A very embarrassing “administrative oversight” meant the first attempt at the redistribution had to be abandoned for legal reasons I outline inside this post.
The abandoned redistribution had reached the second draft stage of the process before being terminated. This new first draft is the same as the previous second stage draft though with updated enrolment numbers. I previously analysed these boundaries at the abandoned second stage. You can read about the new margins in this post from August.
The process had to be re-started because notices for the earlier redistribution had not been gazetted as required by the Electoral Act. The NT Solicitor’s office advised that the error could not be corrected without legislation so the process had to begin anew. The Redistribution Committee accepted all the comments and objections to the abandoned redistribution as submissions to the restarted redistribution.
As expected, the new process has adopted the previously proposed second stage boundaries that had come close to being finalised. A period for objections and comments on these boundaries is now open until 29 November. Depending on whether a detailed review of this draft needs to be undertaken, the new boundaries will be gazetted before the end of this year or at latest in early 2024.