Electoral Newsfile 81: 1999 Redistribution of Federal Electoral Boundaries

Updated: 5 December 2007

Proposal for SA Announced

On 10 February 1999, the Electoral Commission directed that a Redistribution commence in South Australia as a period of seven years after the day on which that state was last redirected has expired. Details on the redistribution process were contained in Electoral Newsfile number 80.

Following a public consultation process, the Redistribution Committee for South Australia has announced its proposals for the names and boundaries of the twelve redistributed federal electoral Divisions in the State.

The proposed Divisions

South Australia continues to experience high rates of growth on the outer metropolitan fringe of Adelaide. In other areas of the State, growth rates are generally uneven but it is of particular note that there is low growth forecast for the north of the State and Adelaide's western metropolitan area.

The Redistribution Committee identified that there was sufficient current enrolment and projected growth in the three existing country Divisions (Barker, Grey and Wakefield) to formulate the boundaries of three new country Divisions within the allowable tolerances.

For the eight metropolitan Divisions and the Division of Mayo the Committee noted a need to transfer projected excess enrolment from the existing outer Divisions of Kingston, Makin and Mayo into the other metropolitan Divisions.

In the formation of its proposal the Redistribution Committee was mindful of Section 66 of the Commonwealth Electoral Act and in particular the intent to keep each Division as close to average enrolment as practicable.

Maps showing the proposed Divisions are here.

Names of proposed Divisions

The Redistribution Committee's deliberations have resulted in proposed Divisions that can be readily identified with the existing 12 Divisions. The Committee therefore proposed retention of the names of the existing Divisions.

Redistribution Committee Members

Electoral Commissioner Mr Bill Gray

Australian Electoral Officer for South Australia Mr Geoff Halsey

Surveyor-General for South Australia Mr Peter Kentish

Auditor-General of South Australia Mr Ken MacPherson

Further information
Outline maps of the proposed boundaries were published in The Advertiser and The Australian on 21 May 1999.

More detailed maps and the reasons for the Redistribution Committee's proposal are in the Committee's Report, published on 21 May 1999. The Report is available for inspection at any AEC Divisional Office in SA, all AEC capital city Head Offices and at the AEC's Central Office in Canberra. Copies of the Report are available from the office of the Australian Electoral Officer for South Australia.


Objections to the Committee's proposals concerning names or boundaries may be lodged with the AEC until 6pm on 18 June 1999. Those objections will then be made available to the public for comment by 6pm on 2 July 1999. If any Objections are received they, together with any Comments, will be considered by the Augmented Electoral Commission which consists of the Redistribution Committee for SA together with the Chairman of the Electoral Commission (Hon. Trevor Morling, QC) and the non-judicial Commissioner (Mr Bill McLennan, Australian Statistician).

The Augmented Electoral Commission has until 31 August 1999 in which to consider Objections, Comments, hold public hearings if necessary, and make a revised redistribution proposal if it thinks that it is warranted. The Augmented Electoral Commission may also consider any further objections that may be lodged against the revised proposal.

Once these processes are completed, the Augmented Electoral Commission will make a final determination of Divisional boundaries and names. Details of the determination will be published and a report will be tabled in federal Parliament. The final determination is not subject to appeal. The boundaries of the final determination will come into effect at the next general Federal Election.

What is a redistribution?

A redistribution is a redrawing of electoral boundaries to ensure that, as nearly as practicable, there are the same number of electors in each Division for a given State or Territory.

A quota is used to determine the number of Divisions each State and Territory is entitled to. At the time of the redistribution, the number of people enrolled in each electoral division may not vary from the average by more than 10 per cent. The boundaries are also drawn with the aim that at the projection time (30 June 2001) the number of people enrolled in each division should be within the range plus or minus three and a half per cent of the average.

What causes a redistribution?

The Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 defines three triggers that can cause a redistribution. A redistribution is held:

  1. when the number of Members of the House of Representatives to which a State or Territory is entitled has changed; or
  2. when the number of electors in more than one-third of the Divisions in a State or in one of the Divisions in the ACT deviates from the average Divisional enrolment by more than 10 per cent in three consecutive months; or
  3. if seven years has elapsed since the last redistribution.

Previous redistributions in South Australia

South Australia was last redistributed in 1992 as a result of a reduction in its entitlement to parliamentary representatives. At that time the State was reduced from 13 Divisions to 12.

Proposed name of Division Number of electors at 10 February 1999 % above or below quota Projected enrolment at 30 June 2001 % above or below average enrolment at 30 June 2001 Area (in square kilometres)
Adelaide 86305 1.08 87661 0.48 70.82
Barker 85418 0.04 87728 0.56 52005.74
Bonython 83225 -2.53 88761 1.74 268.65
Boothby 88871 4.08 88832 1.82 119.21
Grey 87590 2.58 87834 0.68 897822.42
Hindmarsh 84542 -0.99 85054 -2.51 62.8
Kingston 82566 -3.30 85353 -2.16 170.01
Makin 86835 1.70 89689 2.81 109.78
Mayo 82827 -3.00 85610 -1.87 2035.37
Port Adelaide 86425 1.22 86294 -1.08 234.10
Sturt 84949 -0.51 86106 -1.30 66.31
Wakefield 85079 -0.36 87953 0.82 31123.42
  1024632   1046875   984088.63
3 maps: one of South Australia, one of the Adelaide region and one more detailed showing the proposed division of Mayo Map showing proposed divisions in metropolitan Adelaide

AEC Contacts

Central Office

Electoral Commissioner Ph. (02) 6271 4400
Bill Gray

Director, Information Ph. (02) 6271 4415
Brien Hallett

Editor, Newsfile Ph. (02) 6271 4505
Bernadette O'Meara

State/Territory Head Offices
The administration of federal elections in each State and Territory is under the control of the Australian Electoral Officer (AEO) for that State or Territory.

AEOs may be contacted on the following numbers.

New South Wales
Frances Howat Ph. (02) 9375 6333 Fx. (02) 9281 9384

David Muffet Ph. (03) 9285 7171 Fx. (03) 9285 7178

Bob Longland Ph. (07) 3834 3400 Fx. (07) 3831 7223

Western Australia
Andrew Moyes Ph. (08) 9470 7299 Fx. (08) 9472 3551

South Australia
Geoff Halsey Ph. (08) 8237 6555 Fx. (08) 8231 2664

Alex Stanelos (Acting) Ph. (03) 6235 0500 Fx. (03) 6234 4268

Northern Territory
Kerry Heisner Ph. (08) 8981 1477 Fx. (08) 8981 7964

Redistribution Secretariat

Wayne Seymour Ph. (02) 6271 4688

Or call 13 23 26 from anywhere in Australia for the cost of a local call.

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