THERE are seven candidates for Patterson listed on the Australian Electoral Commission site.
BURSTON, Graham – Pauline Hanson’s One Nation.
CLARE, Brian – Rise Up Australia Party
BROWN, John – The Greens
SWANSON, Meryl – Labor
DAVIS, Peter – Citizens Electoral Council
HOWARD, Karen – Liberal
ARENA, Peter – Christian Democratic Party (Fred Nile Group)
The seat of Patterson has had its boundaries re-distributed to be only one sixth of its original area.
The boundary is now 1,123 square km’s in size.
It includes Port Stephens, Lochinvar, Raymond Terrace, East Maitland, most of Maitland and Kurri Kurri.
This re-distribution has seen the original 9.8% liberal favouring margin change to a 0.4% labour favouring margin.
Bob Baldwin, the retiring Liberal MP was first elected in 1996, defeated in 1998, and re-elected in 2001.
The election will mean a new face of Paterson, as Mr Baldwin has been the MP for seventeen of the last twenty years.
This year will see a change to how you vote for the Senate.
This can now be done by either numbering 6 boxes above the line or at least 12 numbers below it.
For younger residents who are unsure if they are enrolled to vote, you can check on the AEC website.
It is now too late to enrol if you have not already done so.
There are currently 112, 575 residents enrolled to vote in the Paterson division.
As voting is compulsory for every Australian resident over 18, there are a range of ways for people to vote who may not be able to get there physically.
A valid and sufficient reason for not voting must be presented, or a fine will be distributed.
The election will be held on 2 July 2016.
By Simone JOHNSON