Display of posters
During the regulated period, the NSW Electoral Commission regulates the display of posters in two general ways:
whether it complies with requirements about its content, e.g. incorrect or misleading information about voting, that it includes the name and address of the person authorising the material, etc.
whether it has been placed in or on certain places, e.g. posters are not permitted on certain premises, or within 6 metres of venues at which people are voting, etc.
A person must not, during the regulated election period, publicly display or permit or cause to be publicly displayed, a poster consisting of electoral material that contravenes the law.
A person must not, during the regulated election period, display or permit or cause to be displayed a poster on or within any premises occupied or used by, or under the control or management of:
the Crown or a NSW Government agency
any council or county council or
on or within any other premises unless the person was the owner or a joint owner of the premises or, performed the act concerned with the permission in writing of the owner or a joint owner of the premises.
Premises includes any structure or building. It may also be unlawful for a person to attach a poster to an electricity or other utility pole without the written consent of its owner, who may take action against the person responsible.
The following exceptions apply to the display of posters:
posters may be displayed on the outer wall, fence or other boundary of the grounds of an enclosure in which a building used for voting is situated
posters may be displayed within the grounds of an enclosure in which a building used for voting is situated
posters may be displayed on a vehicle on a road or road related area (within the meaning of section 4(1) of the Road Transport Act 2013 and
posters may be fixed or attached to a table or stall on a footpath or other public places at any time of day of voting for an election.
Size of posters and their period of display
The NSW Electoral Commission does not regulate the size of posters or the period of when they are displayed.
Candidates and parties must also be aware of other laws about election posters that the NSW Electoral Commission does not regulate. The State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 states election posters may also be ‘exempt development’ not requiring development approval.
For example, to be exempt development a poster must (note that other conditions apply):
not be more than 0.8m2 in area, and;
be displayed only during the following periods
8 weeks immediately preceding the day on which the election is held
the day on which the election is held
1 week immediately following the day on which the election is held.
The NSW Electoral Commission does not enforce these laws. Candidates and parties should contact their local council or obtain independent advice.