Where to Return Your Voting Papers

ORC and Election

Where to Return Voting Papers – Dunedin City

Plan A: You should have received your voting papers by now. (If not, see Special Votes below.) Maybe you’ve already completed your ballot papers. And perhaps you’re wondering how to return them. Plan A is for you to post them back. Which means finding a post box. Good luck with that in Dunedin. There’s about 16 of them in total across the main urban part of the city. Here’s a map to show you where they are. Many suburbs have none nearby. Walking to your nearest could involve quite a few kilometers. So you might have to drive to your nearest one – if you have a car and if you drive. Imagine the carbon footprint of everyone in the city driving to find the nearest post box! And the thing is that many of the post boxes that still exist are in very busy locations. So you’ll probably have to park some distance away so you’ll still get some exercise anyway.

4 October 2022 Last day for posting vote by mail. After this date votes must be returned to council’s secure ballot boxes.

Vote 2022 website https://www.votelocal.co.nz/information-for-voters/key-dates/

Plan B: there are also some big orange bins around the city at key locations, as listed here in the Star newspaper. Including all branches of the Dunedin Public Libraries, DCC Service Centers, Toitu, Otago Uni, Polytechnic, Otago Museum, Pak’n’Save Dunedin, and New Worlds Dunedin, North Dunedin and Mosgiel.

I asked about collection from these bins, and learned:

The DCC is responsible for the bin placement and collection. … the plan is to pick the bins up on Friday, 7 October at midday. DCC staff will be placing stickers on the bins detailing this …they are clearing all bins no less than twice weekly through noon 7 October when the bins will be removed.

Plan C: the DCC website also advises that there will be voting boxes on the two book buses during the voting period, and here’s the book bus timetable. This looks a lot of good options a lot closer to a lot more homes.

Special Votes

If your voting papers didn’t arrive, or you’ve moved address, or for lots of other reason; if you need a special vote you can go to the Civic Centre Plaza just off the Octagon in the center of the city. open 8.30am – 5pm until Friday 7th October and then 8.30am until 12 noon on Saturday 8th October.

Special voting is available in the Civic Centre from Friday 16 September until Friday 7 October from 8.30am to 5pm daily, and on Saturday 8 October from 8.30am to 12 noon.

DCC website https://www.dunedin.govt.nz/council/electoral-information/special-voting

There’s also going to be travelling special voting booths moving around the Dunedin during the voting period. Here’s the timetable.

Summary for Returning Voting Papers

For returning voting papers received by mail:

  • Up to Tuesday 4 October – find a NZ Post post box or find a big orange bin.
  • Up to 12 noon Friday 7 October – find a big orange bin.
  • Up to 12 noon Saturday 8 October – go to Civic Centre Plaza in the Octagon.

An Idea

One last thought. Plan D. Why don’t we hire a fleet of Mr Whippy vans next time as mobile collection bins. They could run around the city repeatedly, playing the Mr Whippy tune, offering a free standard ice cream for each returned voting envelope? Most voting papers don’t get returned, which isn’t much good for the democratic process. How about a bit of fun, and an incentive?

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