2020 local government election | counting of votes

On Saturday, 28 March at 6pm, polling booths closed and the unofficial preliminary count started. Results will be posted progressively on the 2020 local government elections results page.

The ECQ expects counting to take longer than usual in the 2020 local government elections, due to the large volume of postal votes that need to be returned, and changes in procedures to manage social distancing during the count process.

Count guide

The unofficial preliminary count begins following the close of polls at 6pm on election day.

What will be counted on Saturday night?

  • low volume early voting centre votes, where capacity allows
  • Brisbane City Lord Mayor and councillor votes across all wards
  • commence counts for full postal councils
  • unofficial counts and indicative counts for Bundamba and Currumbin state by-elections.

What will not be counted on Saturday night?

  • telephone voting – those ballot papers will be sorted and be part of a vote exchange back to the Returning Officer for the relevant council
  • postal votes in attendance councils
  • votes taken at Brisbane City Hall for other local government areas – those ballot papers will be sorted and be part of a vote exchange back to the Returning Officer for the relevant council
  • medium and high-volume early voting centres
  • declaration votes, other than postal votes.

When does the official count start?

After the preliminary counts are completed the official counts are undertaken under the supervision of the Returning Officer for the relevant council. All preliminary counts are counted again as part of the official count.

Postal votes and declaration scrutiny and extraction of ballot papers from envelopes will continue, and these votes will be admitted to the count.

When will results be declared?

Declarations are made as soon as it is mathematically impossible for the result to change. Outstanding postal votes, which must be returned by close of business ten days after election day (by 5pm on Tuesday, 7 April) may have an impact on the ECQ’s ability to declare results in some cases.

Results will be progressively updated on ECQ’s website and declarations will be published as counts are completed.

Prior to election day

Early voting

Early voting starts 2 weeks before polling day and continues up until 6 pm on the Friday before polling day.

Postal voting

Postal votes commence after nominations close and must be completed by 6 pm on polling day.

Early voting

Steps

Mobile voting

Mobile voting

Declared institution visits start 11 days before polling day and continue up until 6 pm on polling day.

Remote area mobile voting

Remote area mobile voting starts 2 weeks before polling day and continue until 6 pm on polling day.

Steps

On election day

Voting

Voting starts at 8 am and continues up until 6 pm.

Ballot box

Steps

Counting votes

Counting

At 6 pm on election night, the preliminary count of polling day votes, postal votes and early voting starts.

Steps

After election day

Official count

This is the official count and can take up to 10 days after polling day to receive postal votes.

The official count process includes the return of postal votes, scrutiny of declaration votes, and allocation of preferences.

Official count

Counting

Steps

Election declared

Election results declared