Peter Gutwein

Premier of Tasmania

5 April 2020

Elise Archer, Attorney-General

Legislative Council Elections to be deferred

The Tasmanian 2020 Legislative Council Elections for the divisions of Huon and Rosevears will be deferred in a further measure to protect Tasmanians against the spread of coronavirus.

While the elections are an important part of our State’s democratic process, on advice from Public Health and in the best interests of the Tasmanian community, the strongest measures must be in place to minimise any risk of coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.

The Constitution Act 1934 provides that the poll must be held on a Saturday in the month of May. Currently they are to be held on Saturday, 30 May.

The Tasmanian Government believes that the election should not be put off indefinitely, to ensure voters have proper representation and it is our aim, dependent on restrictions in place at the time, to hold them before the Legislative Council sits again on 25 August.

A Notice will be issued under section 13(1) of the COVID-19 Disease Emergency (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2020, for the election to now occur before the next sitting of the Legislative Council.

Should public health circumstances require a further deferral of the election, then a further Notice would need to be considered.

We understand how important these elections are to the people of Huon and Rosevears and we will continue to take advice from Public Health to ensure they are conducted safely and in the best interests of Tasmanians.

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