Why are we reviewing our ward boundaries?

    The NSW Local Government Act 1993 (the Act) requires councils to review ward boundaries to ensure that the difference in the number of electors across each ward does not exceed 10 per cent.

    An August 2022 review of NSW Electoral Commission data identified a need for Lake Macquarie City Council to alter our ward boundaries to rectify a 11.28 per cent variance. The latest available data indicates this variance has grown to 13.49 percent.

    Under the Act, any alterations to ward boundaries must be finalised 10 months before the closing date for the next ordinary election (September 2024).

    We have developed a Ward Boundary Plan to help our community understand the proposed alterations to ward boundaries and how it may affect them. The proposed alterations outlined in this plan will bring our three wards – East, North and West – back within 10 per cent or less variance.

    What methodology was used for determining the proposed ward boundaries?

    The following guidelines were used to develop our proposed ward boundaries:

    Future growth

    The number of electors in Lake Macquarie City is expected to increase by more than 25,000 by 2040, with significant growth forecast in West and North wards around Morisset and Cameron Park. The proposed ward boundaries account for this growth and will reduce the need for future boundary alterations.

    Suburb boundaries

    Where possible, we have avoided splitting suburbs across wards, to help make ward boundary information easier for our residents to understand and remember come election time.

    The proposed boundary alterations will see some whole suburbs change wards to address elector variance, while in other cases only minor adjustments are proposed, affecting a small group of electors.

    Statistical area boundaries

    Where possible, whole Statistical Area Level 1 Boundaries, as used by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, have been retained.

    Lake frontage

    Lake Macquarie is the sparkling heart of our city, and reflects the lifestyle and values of our community. As such, the proposed boundary alterations retain lake frontage across all three wards.

    What suburbs will change wards under the proposed ward boundary alterations?

    The proposed boundary alterations mainly impact suburbs in northern Lake Macquarie.

    Maps and information about the proposed changes to each ward boundary are included in our Ward Boundary Plan.

    Will this review of ward boundary impact my rates?

    No, the process that Council follows to determine rates in Lake Macquarie City is separate from our review of ward boundaries. 

    You can read more about how rates are determined at valuergeneral.nsw.gov.au. 

How to make a submission

    How can I make a submission?

    • Provide written feedback via the online submission form on this website.
    • Email [email protected] with the subject heading "Ward Boundary Review" by Monday 4 September 2023.
    • Write to Coordinator Council Liaison Amber Murray, Box 1906, Hunter Region Mail Centre, NSW 2310

    Printed copies of the Ward Boundary Plan are available from the Council Administrative Centre in Speers Point. 

    I've made a submission - what happens next?

    Feedback may result in further changes being made to the Ward Boundary Plan prior to a report being prepared for Council.

    You will be notified again, prior to Council considering the matter, which will include a link to the Council report containing a summary of submissions and how feedback was considered. It is expected the revised Ward Boundary Plan will be reported back to Council seeking adoption on Monday 25 September 2023.

    What should I put in a submission?

    Your submission can be as concise or as long as you wish.

    Ideally, you will express your level of support for the plan and provide detailed and specific feedback. The feedback will be reviewed by staff and later presented to Council to make an informed decision.

    Should multiple submissions be received from a single resident regarding this project, the feedback will be reviewed by staff and counted as one submission when reporting back to Council.

    Any submission received by Council will be publicly available on Council’s website. Submissions may also be accessed under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009. Council may reproduce submissions in Council reports or in Court proceedings.