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Statement by NSW Electoral Commissioner: Ryde district recount – 2023 State election

I have decided there will be a recount of ballot papers for the Legislative Assembly district of Ryde. 

The discretion to conduct a recount is found in section 172 of the Electoral Act 2017.  I have made the decision to recount the ballot papers for this election mainly due to the very small margin of votes between the top two candidates after the distribution of preferences. There is no statutory requirement to conduct a recount due only to the closeness of a result and errors in the original count process would ordinarily also be expected. No such errors have been identified but I consider a recount in this case would support the objects of the Electoral Act, including facilitating the fair and transparent conduct of elections in New South Wales. 

I am satisfied there are factors relevant to this particular election that mean a recount is appropriate before proceeding to declare the final results. These factors include:

  • it is the first election under the new electoral district boundaries from the 2021 redistribution

  • the margin between the first and second-ranked candidates is a similar level to the margin that would lead to a recount of a federal seat

  • the margin of votes between the first and second-ranked candidates in this election is much smaller than the margin at the previous two elections for the district

  • a request for a recount has been made by the second-ranked candidate

All parties and candidates participating in the Ryde district election have been notified of the details of the recount and the requirements in relation to their scrutineers’ attendance. The recount is scheduled to take place on Saturday, 15 April 2023. If it cannot be completed on Saturday, it will be finalised on Monday, 17 April 2023.

John Schmidt
NSW Electoral Commissioner

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