COUNT GOES ON: Despite coronavirus social distancing rules, a skeleton staff of Electoral Commission officials kept the Gympie Regional council election count running in Gympie.
COUNT GOES ON: Despite coronavirus social distancing rules, a skeleton staff of Electoral Commission officials kept the Gympie Regional council election count running in Gympie.

Gympie election update: Dramatic vote clash in postal vote count

THE struggle for control of Gympie Regional Council is being played out in dramatic fashion at Southside and the Cooloola Coast.

Gympie region deputy mayor Bob Leitch is fighting for political survival as his rival, Warren Polley maintains a lead in latest Division 7 voting figures from Electoral Commission Queensland.

At the Cooloola Coast, incumbent Mark McDonald is struggling to hold Division 1, as challenger Jess Milne winds in some of Mr McDonald’s narrow lead.

Yesterday’s early counting reduced that lead to nine votes, with Mr McDonald sitting on 1074 votes, compared to Miss Milne on 1065. Later postal voting did not change things much, with both candidates receiving 10 votes each and no-one else in sight of victory.

This is the only council division where the result is so close, it might have to be decided by preference votes.

In Division 7, Mr Polley’s 1088 votes in the morning became 1097 by the end of afternoon postal ballot counting, compared to 1046 held by Mr Leitch in the morning and 1066 by day’s end.

Elsewhere across the Gympie region Dolly Jensen, who claimed victory in Division 2 yesterday, is now holding 1754, compared to 1136 held by her opponent Leonora Cox.

In Division 3, incumbent Shane Waldock extended his lead with a total vote now of 1059.

Newcomer Bruce Devereaux appears a certain winner in Division 4, with 1111 votes.

Division 5 incumbent Dan Stewart is also looking good, with 1249 votes in the morning and another 23 postal votes by the end of the day.

In Divisions 6 and 8, incumbents Hilary Smerdon and Bob Fredman both appear to have won.

Postal votes are now being counted daily, as they come in, while telephone votes are also expected to be counted soon.

Gympie Times


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