Frequently Asked Questions
- What is an electoral boundaries review?
- What is a Distribution?
- As an elector do I need to do anything?
- How often is a review of electoral boundaries conducted?
- Does the Government run the electoral boundaries review?
- What happens if an election or by-election is called before the review is complete?
- What dates do I need to remember?
- When are the submissions made public?
- Why are the submissions made public?
- Why is the electoral boundaries review not considering the Legislative Council boundaries?
- When do the new boundaries come into effect?
- Can I use the map images on this website for other purposes?
- I am a media representative with a question- who do I contact?
The electoral boundaries review ensures that, at election time, the number of electors in each electorate is within an acceptable range. This is important so that members of parliament represent districts containing comparable numbers of electors. In addition to changes in the number of electors in each electorate, there are a number of factors considered before boundary changes can happen.
Find out more about the electoral boundaries review process.
A Distribution is another term for an electoral boundary review. Prior to 2015, reviews were often called distributions.
The most important thing you can do as an elector is keep your enrolment details up to date. A review of electoral boundaries relies on the enrolment details for every elector at a point in time so having those as accurate as possible is important. If you’ve moved recently or migrated into Western Australia and haven’t updated your enrolment details you can do so at elections.wa.gov.au
As an elector you have the right to make a submission to the Electoral Distribution Commissioners on where the electoral boundaries should be. You can also comment on the submissions of other electors and on the draft proposed boundary maps that the Commissioners will produce. For details on when you can do these things go to the 2023 Distribution Timeline.
If you want to make a submission, you can find out how to here
Reviews are conducted two years after a State general election. State elections are a fixed date and held every four years on the second Saturday in March.
It is an important part of our democratic system of elections that electoral boundary reviews are operated independently of government. A review of electoral boundaries is conducted by three Electoral Distribution Commissioners. These Commissioners are a retired Supreme Court Judge (Chair), the Electoral Commissioner and the Government Statistician, with the support of other staff. These people form the temporary ‘Office of the Electoral Distribution Commissioners’ or Electoral Boundaries WA.
As the process establishes the boundaries for electorates for members of parliament, the process is conducted with input of all interested community members. The Commissioners oversee the process and make the final decision on the boundaries. The final boundaries are not subject to Government review or approval.
If an election or by-election is called before the electoral boundaries determined from the review are due to come into effect, the existing boundaries from the previous 2019 review are used.
There are three key deadlines for submissions during the electoral boundaries review. These are outlined in the 2023 Distribution Timeline, in accordance with Electoral Act 1907.
Suggestions will be made public as soon as practicable after the suggestion period has closed. The Commission does not release submissions when they arrive, and only at the conclusion of the submission period so all are available simultaneously.
Similarly, comments on the suggestions; and objections to the proposed boundaries will be made public as soon as practicable after the submission periods for each have closed.
The electoral boundaries review is a consultative process that can impact all Western Australians. The Electoral Act 1907 also requires that all suggestions lodged by the due date are made available for viewing by the public after the suggestion period closes.
By sharing all the submissions, the Electoral Distribution Commissioners hope to encourage more people to contribute and build upon each others’ ideas for the best possible outcomes.
Changes to the law by Parliament, in 2021, removed the concept of Legislative Council regions represented by six members each and introduced a single whole of State electorate. At the 2025 state election all electors will vote for 37 Legislative Council members from across all of Western Australia in one electorate. Therefore the Commissioners do not need to consider boundaries for the Legislative Council as the legal geographic boundaries of the State are already established.
The new boundaries when determined, are to be published by 1 December 2023, and will apply for the 2025 State election.
The maps on this website can only be used in promotional materials for electoral or media purposes.
The Electoral Distribution Commission is supported by a small team but there is no dedicated media officer. Please contact the Commission at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll respond to you as quickly as we can.