ELECTION: 70% votes counted with Strelow still clear winner
UPDATE Tuesday 2pm: MORE than 70% of votes are counted and Margaret Strelow is the clear winner.
The incumbent Rockhampton Regional Mayor has secured well over 14,000 votes as of noon today.
Votes so far
- Margaret Strelow - 14, 346
- Michael McMillan - 11, 384
- Lea Taylor - 5433
- Dominic Doblo - 4233
- Bruce Diamond - 2358
- Chris Hooper - 1380
UPDATE 5.30pm: AFTER a day of counting votes, Margaret Strelow could be returning as mayor of Rockhampton Regional Council.
Ms Strelow is ahead in the polls with 13,358 votes, while Michael McMillan's trails on 10,688. This result is of 5pm on Sunday.
Counting has finished for the day. 50 of 99 booths have been counted.
Votes so far
- Margaret Strelow - 13, 358
- Michael McMillan - 10, 688
- Lea Taylor - 4949
- Dominic Doblo - 4042
- Bruce Diamond - 2178
- Chris Hooper - 1288
UPDATE 3:40pm: MORE votes are in and it seems Michael McMillan is slowly gaining on Margaret Strelow. Mr McMillan is sitting with 29% of the vote and Ms Strelow with 36%.
49 of 99 booths have been counted so far.
Votes so far
- Margaret Strelow - 12,898
- Michael McMillan - 10, 219
- Lea Taylor - 4771
- Dominic Doblo - 3865
- Bruce Diamond - 2109
- Chris Hooper - 1230
UPDATE 12:40pm: THE numbers are slowly rolling in and show Margaret Strelow around 10% ahead of Michael McMillan in the vote count.
Votes so far
- Margaret Strelow - 12,249
- Michael McMillan - 9536
- Lea Taylor - 4436
- Dominic Doblo - 3623
- Bruce Diamond - 1973
- Chris Hooper - 1153
We will be updating the results throughout the day. Stay tuned!
Sunday 10am: THE current vote count has Margaret Strelow out in front with 11,200 votes, and Michael McMillan just behind on 8700 votes.
Just over 31,400 votes have been counted so far.
38 of 99 booths have been counted.
Saturday evening: THE campaigning has ended and the sighs of relief have passed through many candidates' lips after weeks of promoting their policies and themselves in the 2016 Rockhampton and Livingstone elections.
Here is a breakdown of the results so far:
- For Livingstone Mayor: Bill Ludwig has been returned as the Livingstone Mayor
- For Rockhampton Mayor: Margaret Strelow and Michael McMillan are watching the results as they continue to be close but Strelow does hold a strong 37% of the vote at first thing Sunday morning.
- For Rockhampton council: Cherie Rutherford, Rose Swadling and Tony Williams are trending to be returned to Rockhampton council for another term.
- Division 6 - held by retiring councillor Greg Belz - has been a yoyo of results. The first round of counts had three candidates with close totals, but in the second round, the candidate that was third was trending first. And the latest results show another candidate has crept up into second place:
AS VOTE counting wraps up and marks the end of election day, two Team McMillan candidates took time out of their after party to speak of the "surprising" results so far.
Mayoral candidate Michael McMillan is hot on Cr Margaret Strelow's tail with 28.81% to her 36.74% of the votes.
Mr McMillan said the results were "relatively close" but "if that trend carries through it looks like this election is over for a number of members of Team McMillan".
"There are still quite a few votes between Margaret and I now, it's getting late in the night," he said.
"2000 votes can't be ignored but we are going to stick in there and keep punching to the end.
"I'm weary, I'm really satisfied, I am so thankful for the people that have been around me and supported me through all this but I think anything I can take out of all of this is we do have amazing people who care deeply about this region and that's what motivated me to run in the first place.
"I love this town and I have grown even closer to it now I've had such great support.
"Today has been surprising, we had such a warm reception across all the polling booths which was very heart warming.
"That's why I'm keeping faith with that."
Division 6 councillor candidate Drew Wickerson, with 31.51% of the vote, said there had been some tough moments throughout the campaign.
"(Working in Team McMillan) has been the best part," he said.
"I'm surprised at the result so far but again its early days and anything could happen yet."
The votes are currently being counted electronically for the mayoral candidates in Livingstone tonight, with a clear win for Cr Ludwig who received 68.5% of the votes so far.
72% of votes have been counted from 24,709 voters in the shire with Ludwig securing 12,731 of those votes by 9.20pm.
Cr Ludwig said he always felt confident about winning the race for Mayor in the 2016 local government elections, but didn't want to be too self-assured.
"To my competitor, it's a democratic process, which means anybody in the community can put their hand up," he said from the Keppel Bay Sailing Club tonight."
"And to Mr Henwood, I said "good on ya" when he decided to throw his hat in the ring. And I say commiserations but well done for having a go, but I did say the community needed the most experienced and capable hands and really, you have to have some local government experience to take on the top job, particularly in this climate.
"And I would encourage Mr Henwood, if he wants to have a future in local government, go as a councillor, learn the ropes and earn the respect of the community and have a go again."
Cr Ludwig said the current council could not have moved forward without the support of the community.
"From my perspective, we've got a great council and the majority of whom, were prepared to work together," he said.
"We were able to get consensus 98% of the time at our table, and it's been a council that's worked closely with the organisation."
Heath hopes new council makes wise decisions
GATHERED with family friends over a meal, Mayoral candidate for Livingstone Heath Henwood says although defeated after going up against Bill Ludwig, he hoped the new council would make wise decisions.
The school teacher said it was disappointing to see the large gap in votes between the two candidates as the tally was revealed online.
"The people have made their choice, I just hope they (council) will make wise decisions, and I hope string councillors are elected to look after the best interests of the community," he said tonight.
"We looked at the tally the first hour and you could see the trend happening. But I'd just like to say thank you to all of my supporters."
Mr Henwood said whether he would run again for local government was unclear.
"We'll have a chat with the team in coming weeks and review what we're doing and go from there," he said.
Break down of Rockhampton Divisions at 9pm:
Rose Swadling continues to lead the polls in Division 1 securing 55% of the votes counted so far (1903).
Neil Fisher is in the lead in Division 2 with 1491 votes counted so far and Mr Fisher securing 40.1% compared to Warren Acutt's 31.36%.
Tony Williams also looks to be on his way for another term as councillor, securing 61.6% of the votes in Division 3 compared to Amanda Marshall's 21.6%. 3277 votes have been counted at four of 14 booths.
There has been no change in the count for Division 4 since our last update.
Cherie Rutherford is still in the lead in Division 5. She has secured 43% of the votes counted so far (4307 votes at 8 of 17 booths). Bob Pleash has the second highest number of votes in that division - 26,7%
Drew Wickerson has taken over the lead in Division 6 securing 28% of the votes counted so far (2916 from 5 out of 17 booths). The count was close between three candidates in that division earlier tonight. Alan Cornick had been in the lead and was being followed closely by Bruce Simpson.
Donna Kirkland has taken over the lead in Division 7 from long-standing councillor Stephen Schwarten - barely.
3643 votes have been counted so far from 3 of 12 booths with Mrs Kirkland securing 37.21% ahead of Mr Schwarten's 36.12%.
Rockhampton Mayoral count
- FROM Margaret Strelow's back yard with boxes of pizzas to Team McMillan at the bar at the Criterion Hotel, two candidates taking the lead in the Rockhampton mayoral race say the night is too early to call.
Ms Strelow said significant numbers in pre-polling meant she was still unable to gauge how the night would end.
"At the moment early figures are looking ok, but look, that pre-poll was huge, 22,000 votes at the pre-poll and I've got no idea yet what that has gone like for me," she said.
"So that's the surprise in the election, the scale of that pre-poll."
Only one-quarter of the polls have been counted so far in the Rockhampton mayoral race.
Ms Strelow still leads with 36.8% of the 18,304 votes counted so far.
Michael McMillan said he was confident in the outcome of today's polling booths but was anticipating the close numbers to continue throughout the night.
"It's been a big day today and we are happy with how we have gone but we are all pretty tired and looking forward to an end to it," he said.
"We believe it will be a close finish but we are fairly confident we will come out with the outcome we are after.
"It's been a huge effort from the whole team and hopefully we'll be raising glasses to a really strong election later tonight."
- The count of the Livingstone mayoral votes has reached over the halfway mark.
10 out of 18 booths have now been counted with Bill Ludwig in the lead with 65.9% of the 7,735 votes.
HEATH Henwood says he knew he was always going to be the underdog when came to his fight for Mayor in the Livingstone Shire Council election.
Waiting patiently as the results flow in tonight, Mr Henwood said he thought the race for Mayor would be tight between he and Bill Ludwig.
He said feedback from the polling booths had been a mixture of feelings from the community.
"A lot of people were saying they want a change but there was a few other comments too that people were saying sometimes its better the person you know than the person you don't," he said tonight.
"You always hope for the best and you're hopeful people would make wise decisions."
Mr Henwood said he would wait and see what the future held if he didn't make the title of Mayor this time.
- Rockhampton mayoral candidate Michael McMillan has spoken with The Bulletin midway through tonight's count:
- Rose Swadling is one her way to returning for another term as councillor with the first round of counts in for Division 1 showing she has secured almost 60% of the votes.
422 votes have been counted at one of 14 booths in the division. Swadling has 59.2% of the vote compared to Catherine George who has 23.3% and Shane Latcham who has 17.4%.
- Five out of 18 polling booths have been counted in the Livingstone mayoral race - a total of 3844 votes.
Bill Ludwig is still in the lead with 66.35% of the votes, creating a distance between him and his opponent Heath Henwood who has 33.65% of the votes.
- Margaret Strelow continues to be in the lead position in the Rockhampton mayoral race with 12 of 99 booths counted so far.
With 6,379 votes counted, Strelow has secured 37.2% of the vote while Michael McMillan has secured 25.8%, Lea Taylor 14.15%, Dominic Doblo 11.9%, Bruce Diamond 7.47% and Chris Hooper 3.6%.
- Division 7 looks to be a close one with Stephen Schwarten securing 41.35% and Donna Kirkland securing 35% so far.
1.467 votes have been counted so far in Division 7.
- It is a close race in Division 6 so far. Alan Cornick is in the lead with 27% of the votes, followed by Bruce Simpson with 25% of the votes and Drew Wickerson with 20.6% of the 217 votes counted so far.
- In Division 5, Cherie Rutherford has taken the lead with one polling booth count complete.
853 votes have been counted so far for Division 5, with Rutherford securing 48.71% of the votes.
Coming in second is Bob Pleash with 21% of the votes.
- Ellen Smith has secured 66.7% of the votes at one of the polling booths in her division (Division 4 - Gracemere area). 100% of the votes have been counted at this one booth. Brett Wass, the only other candidate standing for Division 4, secured 33.3% of the votes.
- Almost 4,000 votes have been counted in the Rockhampton mayoral race. Margaret Strelow has secured 1338 votes (35.12%) while Michael McMillan has secured 1006 votes (26.4%),
- The gap is narrowing in the Livingstone mayoral race. 1,339 votes have been counted with Ludwig securing 55.6% of the votes.
- The third count in the Rockhampton mayoral race shows Margaret Strelow still in the lead with McMillan closing the gap a bit.
1,824 votes have been counted with Strelow securing 35.97% of the vote.
- The second update in the count for the Livingstone mayoral race shows Heath Henwood closing the gap.
415 votes have been counted with Ludwig still in the lead with 68.1% of the vote and Henwood 31.87%.
- The second round of votes in the Rockhampton mayoral race shows Margaret Strelow still in the lead.
1212 votes have now been counted with Strelow securing 40.52% of the vote and McMillan 23.72%.
- The first round of votes are in for the Livngstone mayoral race with Bill Ludwig ahead of Heath Henwood.
Ludwig has secured 95 of the 116 counted so far (83.3%).
- The first round of counts are in for the Rockhampton Mayoral race with Margaret Strelow in the lead.
Of the 698 votes counted so far, Cr Strelow has accumulated 274 (41.45 of the votes).
Michael McMillan has tallied 145 votes in the first count (21.94).