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The trickle of votes coming in for many local body elections in Otago and Southland is concerning the electoral officer, who is calling for registered voters to stop procrastinating.
Electionz.com electoral officer Anthony Morton said only about 18% of registered voters for the Dunedin City Council local body elections had voted so far.
At previous elections, 22% to 28% had voted by this time.
"It's a bit behind on previous elections, for this time of the voting period.
"The message that we want to get out is for those that are intending to vote, to please do so as soon as they can. Don't procrastinate."
All councils in the southern region were behind on previous elections and Queenstown Lakes District Council and Invercargill City Council had also had low numbers of returns to date.
Only 4843 (20.6%) of Queenstown Lakes District Council's residents and 10,178 (26.46%) of Invercargill City Council's residents had voted so far.
Mr Morton said voting closed at noon this Saturday, but today was the recommended last day for mailing voting forms because they will take time to reach the electoral officer.
"If it's not received by noon on Saturday, it can't be processed.
"The rules are absolute.
"If anyone is planning on returning votes after October 7, they should drop them in to their local council office."