Initial count favours Polglase

VOTERS spoke on Saturday and candidates for the Tweed Shire Council elections are waiting on the outcome with preference voting for the Tweed Shire Council continuing today.

Initial first preference results are in with 35,933 formal and 6239 informal votes counted although postal and pre-poll votes were still to be completed.

As at 12pm today, Warren Polglase (17.75%), Katie Milne (16.14%), Michael Armstrong (12.89%) and Barry Longland (10.29%) are the only candidates to reach double figures after the initial count from Saturday's polls.

Cr Longland said he was happy with his result at this stage of the counting but was not about to claim victory.

"I very please and thankful to the electorate, and to my volunteers that helped," Cr Longland said.

"There is still pre-poll and postal to be counted and I think I will do well from those."

Cr Longland said it could take weeks before the final makeup of the council was known and until then it was business as usual.

"I'm still mayor until the first meeting of council," he said.

"I will be in my office on Monday and have meeting scheduled throughout the week."

Councillors Dot Holdom (4.36%) and Phil Youngblutt (6.28%) are behind and need preferences to fall their way to take seats in the chamber for another term.

First time candidates Carolyn Byrne with 7.12% and Gary Bagnall with 6.49% are also in the mix.

At polls on Saturday candidates were surprised how quiet it was on the day.

Scott Sledge, second on Eddie Roberts' ticket, was handing out how-to-vote pamphlets at Tweed Heads Civic Centre on Saturday.

"It's a bit slower than anticipated most of the old time campaigners have said we have missed the morning rush (at polls)," Mr Sledge said.

"There was 6000 (pre-poll votes) last year and I have been told there has been up to 10,000 pre-polled this year."

The complicated preference flows, which in 2008 saw voters wait three weeks for a final result of the polls, mean it is not yet clear who will fill the other three places on the council.

Topics:  katie milne local elections 2012 tweed shire council warren polglase

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