Ward and Councillor Representation Review

The City of Greater Geraldton is undertaking a review of its current ward system and council representation. The review began in April 2018 and Council made a decision on the matter in October 2018. In January 2019, the Minister approved the changes recommended by Council which included abolishing the ward system of representation and reducing Councillor numbers form 14 to 12. More here

According to the Local Government Act 1995, all local governments with wards must carry out reviews of their ward boundaries and the number of Councillors for each ward at least once every eight years.  The last time wards and representation were reviewed was in 2010, when the then City of Geraldton-Greenough merged with the Shire of Mullewa.

Purpose of the Review

To evaluate the City’s current arrangement of seven wards with 14 elected members and a popularly elected mayor and identify the system of representation that best reflects the characteristics of our community which include:

  • Communities of interest
  • Physical and topographical features
  • Demographic trends
  • Economic factors
  • The ratio of Councillors to electors in the various wards.

Council group photo

Mayor Shane Van Styn (front left), Deputy Mayor Neil McIlwaine (front right) and the 13 City of Greater Geraldton Councillors.

Factors considered in the review

As a result of the Review, the City may propose any of the following:

  • Creating new wards;
  • Changing ward boundaries;
  • Abolishing any or all wards;
  • Changing the name of a district or a ward;
  • Changing the number of Councillors; and/or
  • Specifying or changing the number of offices of Councillor for a ward.

Section 2.17 of the Local Government Act 1995 provides that where its Mayor is elected at large, a local government must have a minimum of six and no more than 15 (including the Mayor and up to 14 Councillors) elected members.

Ward and Representation Review Discussion Paper

A discussion paper outlining the various ward boundary options and elected member representation is available here

The Review Process

The review process must be carried out in accordance with the provisions of the Local Government Act 1995 as outlined above.

Community Information sessions were held in June to inform the community on the options, process and how to make a submission.  More here

At the October 2018 Council Meeting, Council resolved to move away from the current ward system and reduce their numbers to 12.  All Councillors up for re-election in 2019 as Council believed this will give residents the opportunity to choose the 12 people they believe will best represent the entire community, not just their ward. Councillors also decided to retain a popularly elected Mayor, as they believe the community should be able to choose their civic leader. More here

Council's recommendations have since been reviewed by the Government Advisory Board and the Minister has approved reducing the number of Councillors form 14 to 12 and abolishing the ward system. More here

The matter as to whether or not there will be a spill at October 2019 election has yet to be determined.

Review Process Chart

Current City of Greater Geraldton Wards

Current City Wards

View PDF of current Wards here

Proposed Wards Options up for Consideration

Option 1: Six Wards and 12 Councillors (2 Councillors per ward)


Option 2: Four Wards and eight Councillors (2 Councillors per ward)

Option3: Four Wards and 12 Councillors (3 Councillors per ward)

Option 4: Five Wards and 14 Councillors (Variable Councillors per ward)

Option 5: No Wards

Option 6: Mullewa Ward (1 Councillor), North/Hills Ward (3 Councillors), four other wards (2 Councillors each)