The Queanbeyan-Palerang election count will continue on Sunday with the ALP ticket leading the tally of first-preference votes, as problems plagued those voting digitally using iVote due to the high volume of users.
By 11pm on Saturday, a little more than 47 per cent of first-preference votes were counted following Saturday's Queanbeyan-Palerang Council elections.
Late Saturday evening, 20,447 total ballots had been counted, with 1748 judged informal ballots that would not be used in determining the results. A potential 43,470 total votes from residential and non-residential electors were enrolled for the election.
Labor's ticket was in front of first preference votes, with more than 21 per cent of those counted, following by the independent ticket headed by Labor-member Kenrick Winchester, which received around 17 per cent of the current first preference votes.
The Liberals' ticket received 16 per cent of first preference votes in the current tally.
The Greens currently has 10 per cent of first preference votes.
iVote problems prevented some from voting
However, problems with the iVote system meant some users who applied to use the system for the first time in council elections were unable to do so. The NSW Electoral Commission acknowledged the fault and apologised.
"Any eligible elector who applied to use iVote today but missed out on voting will be excused from paying any penalty," the commission said in a statement on Saturday.
"We apologise to any voters unable to gain access to the system due to these issues.
"A full report on the conduct of the election is required by legislation to be released on our website by May 2022."
Almost triple the number of voters used iVote at these elections than any previous election, after the system was opened up for council elections for the first time in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
More than 652,983 votes in council elections across NSW had been cast using iVote by 1pm on Saturday.
Queanbeyan-Palerang council results
The NSW Electoral Commission's current quota needed to take one of those places is 1559 votes.
Early results showed 3791 above the line votes for Labor, enough for two candidates to be elected. Bryce Wilson - a staffer to Bean Labor MP David Smith - at the top of the ticket is guaranteed to be elected, along with Bigambul woman Esma Livermore.
The Liberals have picked up 2957 above the line votes, ensuring Louise Burton is elected and all but guaranteeing Jacqueline Ternouth, the second candidate on the ticket, joins her on council.
Kenrick Winchester, a member of the Labor party, but heading an independent group was the third highest ticket, currently with 2644 above the line votes, ensuring the former councillor will be returned. Edwina Webster, second on Winchester's ticket, could also be elected once preferences are calculated.
The Greens are currently fourth with 1718 above the line votes, enough for Katrina Willis to join the council.
Independent ticket lead by Mareeta Grundy will also take one of the councillor seats, after receiving 1604 above the line votes.
Preferences will determine the remaining three councillors.
The deputy mayor, Michele Biscotti was among the previous councillors vying for those places, having picked up 945 above the line votes. Real estate agent Steve Taskovski is another former councillor on the ballot, who picked up 928 above the line votes.
Independent Bill Waterhouse has the current highest direct vote for any candidate with 913 votes.
Former mayor Tim Overall and five other previous councillors decided not to contest the elections. A seventh councillor, Peter Bray, died in August 2020.
The councillors will vote for the new mayor at the first council meeting in January.
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