You won’t be able to stand for council unless you are nominated as a candidate. You do this by lodging a $125 Nomination Deposit and submitting a package to the Returning Officer for your Council election by 12 noon on Nomination Day.

You can’t nominate yourself. You must be nominated either by a registered political party, or by two enrolled voters in your local government area (or ward, if your council uses a ward system). To do this you must complete a form available for download from the NSWEC website at If you are being nominated by two enrolled voters you should complete the Nomination Form for Mayor or Councillor – Nomination by 2 Electors.

The nomination form includes a section known as the Candidates Information Sheet, which contains some basic details about you as well as optional information such as your date of birth, occupation, qualifications, policies and any other relevant information. However you cannot add any attachments. All information must fit within the space provided, so think carefully about the information you wish to include before completing the form.

Once you have completed the CIS, it must be signed by you as the candidate and witnessed by an official such as a Justice of the Peace, or a solicitor.

The Statistics Form captures information such as sex, occupation, age etc, and is used to help compile reports on councillor diversity.

It is recommended that you lodge your nomination form and deposit as early as possible, and telephone the Returning Officer for confirmation that the nomination has been received and is correct. You can find out who is the relevant returning Officer by contacting the Candidate Hotline on 1300 088 942, or alternatively through your local council.

Nomination forms can be lodged with the relevant Returning Officer in person, by post, by fax or by email from the day of the close of rolls up to 12.00 noon on Nomination Day. However it’s important to remember that if you are emailing your nomination:

  • all forms that require signatures must contain an image of the actual signatures of the nominators and the candidate
  • the deposit must be delivered so it reaches the Returning Officer before the 12 noon cut-off. This deposit can be paid by money order, B-Pay, EFTPOS or credit card.

As a candidate, you are entitled to receive a copy of the list of voters in the ward or council you are contesting. This list contains the name and postal addresses of all electors entitled to vote in the election, so you must treat the information with absolute privacy. You can request a list of voters by downloading and completing the form Request for Electronic List of Electors LG.220 (from the NSWEC website) and lodging the form with the Returning Officer for the council area.

Ballot paper draw

After the close of nominations, the Returning Officer will formally announce the candidates and conduct the draw for positions on the ballot paper. This usually happens around 4.00pm, but it is best to check with the Returning Officer for your council.

Key dates and actions