Lockyer Valley mayor's death means another election
THE death of Lockyer Valley Regional Council Mayor Steve Jones has opened the door for a little-known clause in electoral legislation to be enacted.
Mr Jones, who died after what was believed to be a massive stroke, was a mayoral candidate in the election.
Part of the Local Government Electoral Act 2011, the section that deals with the death of a mayoral candidate during the election period, requires the mayoral election to be held at a later date.
This would allow new candidates to nominate for the election, along with any of the currently nominated candidates.
Section 36 of the Local Government Electoral Act states that if a mayoral candidate dies between noon on nomination day, but before polling day, then "the proceedings for the election of the mayor must start again".
The legislation also states the Electoral Commission of Queensland "must, by gazette notice, fix a new polling day for the election".
The Minister has the ability to call for the holding of a new election.
The act allows the Minister to start proceedings again for the mayoral election only.
There is also a provision for the Minister to "direct that the process for the election of all the other councillors also start again".
A spokesman for Local Government Minister Jackie Trad said she would be consulting with Electoral Commission Queensland, council and Local Government Association of Queensland and make an announcement later this week.
Mr Jones was competing against Peter O'Brien and Glenroy Logan.
The Electoral Commission of Queensland will conduct a State Referendum on March 19 in conjunction with the Local Government Quadrennial Elections.
The referendum seeks approval from Queenslanders to change the term of Queensland State Parliament.
That referendum is understood to be going ahead in the Lockyer Valley on March 19.