Geoff Provest is predicted to hold his seat of Tweed.
Geoff Provest is predicted to hold his seat of Tweed. Rick Koenig

Coalition wins, Provest declares victory

11pm - PROVEST DECLARES VICTORY

Geoff Provest has declared victory and will remain the member for Tweed.

Mr Provest was predicted to retain the seat around 9pm and has since celebrated the win with his supporters.

Earlier today, Mr Provest said Labor's Tweed campaign was "particularly nasty" and in a video posted online, Mr Provest said the win was "all about public opinion". 

"We won, the hospital will be built, we're not going to muck around now, we're going to build this damn thing," he said. 

"All those anti-people, go away, it's done, the people of the Tweed have spoken, we're in, that's it."

Geoff Provest celebrates his victory in retaining the seat of Tweed.
Geoff Provest celebrates his victory in retaining the seat of Tweed.

That wraps up our election coverage for tonight. Stay tuned to the Tweed Daily News tomorrow for more updates.

 

10.15pm

Four hours of counting has taken place and we know who will be the premier of NSW.

Gladys Berejiklian will remain the NSW premier, after the Liberal-National coalition won the state election. 

According to the Daily Telegraph, Geoff Provest has declared victory with his supporters. 

Predictions suggest Mr Provest will retain his seat, and may have a small swing in his direction on two-partied preferred. 

The seat of Lismore is too close to call. 

Tweed Count: 23,693

Geoff Provest (NAT): 10,758 - 45.41%

Craig Elliot (ALP): 7275 - 30.71%

Bill Fenelon (GRN): 3674 - 15.51%

Susie Hearder (AJP): 975 - 4.12%

Ronald McDonald (SAP) 1011- 4.27%

Lismore Count: 26,510

Austin Curtin (NAT): 9854 - 37.17%

Sue Higginson (GRN): 7170 - 26.81%

Janelle Saffin (ALP): 6798 - 25.64%

Greg Bennett (IND): 1391 - 5.25%

Alison Waters (AJP): 668 - 2.52%

David Taylor (SAP): 399 - 1.51%

Paul Collits (CON): 293 - 1.11%

 

9.40pm

Geoff Provest is narrowly ahead in the election for Tweed on two-partied preferred. 

Some have predicted he will hold the seat, however it is too close to call for certain. 

9pm

Geoff Provest is being predicted to hold the seat of Tweed, after a campaign focused on the location of the Tweed Valley Hospital. 

Mr Provest currently has more than 45 per cent of the primary vote with roughly 35 per cent of the vote counted. 

Lismore is too close to call, with preference votes likely to decide the winner. 

Overall the Liberal-National coalition is predicted to form government. 

The only question seems to be whether they can govern with a majority, or will require cross-bench support. 

8.25pm

Candidates in the seats of Tweed and Lismore are in for a long night as the votes come in. 

The Nationals appear are in a fight to hold these seats, with the Greens candidate in Lismore making a strong start in the count. 

 

7pm

An hour of counting has taken place and it is understood the Nationals will have a fight on their hands to save the seats of Tweed and Lismore. 

A strong early vote for Greens candidate Sue Higginson has given her party plenty of optimism. 

There are less than 200 votes registered for the seat of Tweed.

 

6pm

POLLS have closed across the state. 

In what is expected to be a tight election, many seats may not be decided tonight.

The Tweed Daily News will keep you up to date all night with live results for the seats of Tweed and Lismore. 

 

5.30pm

Greens candidate Bill Fenelon is "quietly confident" his party may win all three Northern Rivers seats and gain the balance of power in NSW Parliament.

Mr Fenelon said the Tweed had been governed by bureaucrats in Sydney for "too long".

"I think this is a fantastic chance for the Northern Rivers to get some real representation in Sydney, because for too long all of our policies have been governed from Sydney by the Liberal Party or Labor Party," he said.

"This time around, there's a chance the Greens may win the three seats of the Northern Rivers and if the Greens get the balance of power as people are saying we will get, then the Northern Rivers will have the balance of power in the NSW Parliament, which is huge.

"I am seriously quietly confident, it was always going to be a miracle for us to win the Tweed, but I think with the state of politics currently in NSW, the planets are lining up and there's a very good chance we could win this."

Mr Fenelon said the Greens were adamant any new hospital should remain in Tweed Heads.

"We will spend the money for a new hospital there or rebuild the old one, it will have all the facilities, it will bring in all the work for our tradies, and it will be in Tweed Heads where it was supposed to be in accordance to the North Coast Regional Plan," he said.

 

Greens candidate Bill Fenelon  campaigns in Banora Point.
Greens candidate Bill Fenelon campaigns in Banora Point. Rick Koenig

 

4.30pm

Tweed MP Geoff Provest says this election campaign has been the "nastiest" of his political career after opposition supporters allegedly compared him to former Cardinal and convicted paedophile George Pell.

Mr Provest said his volunteers were told he was a supporter of Pell while they were helping with his election campaign during pre-polling.

"They told my volunteers out the front that I had written a positive reference for George Pell and must be a paedophile," Mr Provest said.

"They told a couple of my supporters that they were gay which was extraordinarily poor and they picked on my partner and told untruths about previous relationships.

"They even attacked my partner's uncle to the extent they have all filled out statutory declarations and are considering legal action."

Mr Provest said the personal attacks this campaign had been particularly hurtful.

"It's uncalled for, it's not in the Tweed, all the other three campaigns have been about policy and decisions but this one has turned into personal attacks and I'm extremely disappointed, it's so desperate and a win at all costs attitude.

"It really hurts, today I have my family here so hopefully it doesn't re-occur."

Mr Provest said he had spoken about the issue with Labor candidate for Tweed Craig Elliot and the issues had not repeated since.

"He undertook to curb that activity, but it is bitterly disappointing," Mr Provest said.

 

Tweed MP Geoff Provest and State Labor candidate for Tweed Craig Elliot.
Tweed MP Geoff Provest and State Labor candidate for Tweed Craig Elliot. Rick Koenig

Mr Elliot said he did not condone the nastiness and added his family and supporters had also copped verbal sprays of abuse from the opposition.

"There are always nasty things said in politics and I don't condone any of that, I think people should be respectful and have an honest conversation rather than getting down and calling people names and saying untruths," Mr Elliot said.

"People have said the most horrendous things, not only to myself and my wife, but to other people who have stood up with a different view. There's a long history of it, it's just the nastiness that creeps in from the fringes and it's on all sides of politics, people take things too far and like I say we have a very engaged community, I'd say to those people, show respect, have your voice heard at the ballot box and stick to the truth.

"Lets criticise the policies, not the person as an individual."

Mr Elliot said he did not want to repeat the "horrible lies" that had been told about his family during the election campaign.

"They're internet trolls and just crazy people trying to get attention," he said.

"It's about showing respect and acting mature, I think there is a standard for people living in the public life and that standard is much higher than most.

"No one needs to be vilified, abused or bullied, a lot of people are frustrated with politics and you can see that coming through the doors."

3pm

Animal Justice Party candidate Susie Hearder says she is hopeful the party's 48 lower house candidates will help give animals a bigger voice in NSW Parliament.

"It has been a wonderful campaign to create awareness about so many issues affecting animals and that animals need a greater voice in parliament to protect them from harm," she said.

"If we get a four per cent vote that would be wonderful, but our main aim is to get another voice in the upper house to get our lead candidate Emma Hurst voted in and to join Mark Pearson so we have two voices for our animals in parliament in NSW.

"We're pretty confident of doing that, we have 48 lower house candidates in NSW and 65 per cent of them are women which is great, so I think we have a pretty good chance.

"Because of preferences everyone has to vote very carefully this election, because Animal Justice is a minor party we ask people to vote for us first and send a clear message to politicians that animals matter and have a voice in parliament.

"We want to stop puppy factory farming, hens in battery cages, protect our koalas, greyhound racing, stop live export, there are so just so many issues."

On the Tweed Valley Hospital issue, Ms Hearder says any new facility should remain at the existing Tweed Heads Hospital site.

"I definitely think the hospital should stay in its current location, we need a new, bigger hospital definitely, but I think any hospital down the coast is going to totally spoil our beautiful place we should be promoting for tourism, and we need to protect our agricultural land for food security and to keep us healthy and out of hospitals.

"Kings Forest is where our koalas are so we're absolutely against building a hospital there."

 

Tweed's Animal Justice Party candidate Susie Hearder (centre) with supporters.
Tweed's Animal Justice Party candidate Susie Hearder (centre) with supporters. Rick Koenig

2pm

Federal Richmond MP Justine Elliot says her entire family is proud of Labor candidate Craig Elliot for "standing up and fighting hard for his values".

Mrs Elliot joined her husband at Centaur Primary School to promote his campaign and cast their votes.

"I'm really proud of Craig running as the Labor candidate on all these really important issues, particularly about the hospital site and moving that to Kings Forest, that's something he has been working really hard on, but also the addition of front-line services, more police, more teachers and more nurses in our area that are so vitally important," Mrs Elliot said.

"Our entire family and kids are really proud of him for standing up and being true to his values and beliefs and fighting hard for those, and we'll leave it to the people to decide."

 

Federal Richmond MP Justine Elliot supports her husband and Labor candidate for Tweed Craig Elliot.
Federal Richmond MP Justine Elliot supports her husband and Labor candidate for Tweed Craig Elliot. Rick Koenig

1.30pm

Temperatures are soaring as voters and volunteers attempt to find as much shade as possible to stay out of the heat.

It is currently 31C in Tweed Heads and Banora Point with the day expected to remain mostly sunny before the temperature drops to 26C at about 7pm.

In Murwillumbah, where they are voting in the Lismore electorate, it is currently 31C with an expected high of 33C.

Polls close at 6pm tonight NSW.

 

Aerial view of Centaur Primary School.
Aerial view of Centaur Primary School.

1pm

Labor candidate for Tweed Craig Elliot was joined by his wife Federal Richmond MP Justine Elliot as they voted in the NSW state election.

Mr Elliot said he believed the Tweed Valley Hospital would be the key issue that decides the outcome.

"Every election is a challenge but it's about the issues, people coming through the doors here today are talking about the hospital first and foremost, people want a new hospital here which is great, but it needs to be in the right location," Mr Elliot said.

"We're getting a lot of support, people don't want the hospital built on the current proposed site by the National party, it's a trojan horse for the over-development of Kingscliff and Cudgen."

Mr Elliot said Labor had the funds to build the new hospital at Kings Forest, addressing claims the party had not budgeted for the $534 million facility.

"Labor has got the same money in the budget to deliver that health outcome, my criticism of the current government is for eight years they've done nothing, wilful, systematic underfunding of the current hospital has left it in crisis operating at 115 per cent on most days.

"Most importantly, people will have their say and this election will be a referendum on where they get their hospital delivered. Every vote is important and I'd encourage people to have their voice heard and make their vote count."

 

Labor candidate Craig Elliott and wife Federal Richmond Justine Elliot place their votes.
Labor candidate Craig Elliott and wife Federal Richmond Justine Elliot place their votes. Scott Powick

12pm

Sausage sizzle volunteer Scott Harradine says the day has been "steady" as he cooks up a storm for the hungry residents lining up to vote at Centaur Primary School.

"It's all about the kids and raising money for the school," he said.

But when asked the most important question of all, should onion go on the bottom or top of a sausage, Mr Harradine did not hesitate.

"It should definitely go on top, one incident shouldn't change anything, its worked for 50 years and it works now."

 

Scott Harradine runs the sausage BBQ at Centaur Primary School during today's NSW State Election.
Scott Harradine runs the sausage BBQ at Centaur Primary School during today's NSW State Election. Scott Powick

11.30am

Tweed MP Geoff Provest has arrived to cast his vote at Centaur Primary School in Banora Point.

Mr Provest said he was "quietly confident" going into the election but was "under no illusion" about how tight it could be.

"It was always going to be a tough fight, I said that from day one, I'm under no illusion that the hospital is a major issue but there is also a dying desire to create that new hospital," Mr Provest said.

"I guess I'm quietly confident but really it's up to the good people of the Tweed to determine the fate. We've got a record of providing for the Tweed, I'd like to finish off the hospital and look after everyones future needs.

"I seek their support to keep on delivering for the Tweed into the future, we've got some really exciting things to come, we've got light rail, increases in our school and extra doctors and nurses and teachers, so it's all there out the front so hopefully they can make an informed decision.

 

Tweed MP Geoff Provest casts his vote in Banora Point.
Tweed MP Geoff Provest casts his vote in Banora Point. Rick Koenig

11am

The skies are clear and the sausages are sizzling as droves of Tweed residents head to the polls to decide who will be the next member for Tweed in the NSW election.

Labor needs to win seven seats to form a majority government in the state election, however current Premier Gladys Berejiklian and the Coalition have pulled slightly ahead in both polling and betting odds, which is sure to make for a tight battle that could go down to the wire.

Both Tweed and Lismore, previously safe National Party seats, are expected to be major players in which party comes out on top.

The location of the Tweed Valley Hospital is expected to be a big decider in who will win the election locally, with the Nationals planning to build the project on former farmland at Cudgen, while Labor plans to move the site to Kings Forest.

Stay tuned with the Tweed Daily News as we cover the election throughout the day and evening.



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