State/territory entitlement to electoral divisions

Updated: 25 August 2016

Current entitlement

The number of the people of the Commonwealth and of the several states and territories ascertained on 31 August 2017.

State/territory Number of the people 1
States
New South Wales 7,797,791
Victoria 6,244,227
Queensland 4,883,739
Western Australia 2,567,788
South Australia 1,716,966
Tasmania 519,050
Territories
Australian Capital Territory2 3 419,256
Northern Territory 4 247,512
Norfolk Island 1,756
The Territory of Cocos (Keeling) Islands 550
The Territory of Christmas Island 1,914
Australian Antarctic Territory 57
Territory of Heard Island and McDonald Islands 0
Coral Sea Islands Territory 3
Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands 0
The Commonwealth 5 23,729,561

1 This ascertainment has been made using statistics supplied to the Electoral Commissioner by the Australian Statistician on 28 July 2017 in accordance with section 47 of the Electoral Act and published in the Australian Demographic Statistics, December Quarter 2016 (ABS cat. no. 3101.0) on 27 June 2017.

2 Under sub-section 4(1) of the Electoral Act, the Jervis Bay territory is taken to be part of the ACT.

3 Pursuant to sub-section 48(2C) of the Electoral Act, as Norfolk Island is not entitled to a member of the House of Representatives, the population is added to the population of the Australian Capital Territory and the number of members of the House of Representatives to which the Australian Capital Territory is entitled is recalculated.

4 Pursuant to sub-section 48(2C) of the Electoral Act, as the Territory of Cocos (Keeling) Islands and the Territory of Christmas Island are not entitled to a member of the House of Representatives, the populations of both are added to the population of the Northern Territory and the number of members of the House of Representatives to which the Northern Territory is entitled is recalculated.

5 Under section 45 of the Electoral Act the total number of people of the Commonwealth does not include the numbers of people of the territories.

The population quota

Under section 48(2)(a) of the Electoral Act, the population quota is the number of the people of the Commonwealth divided by twice the number of Senators for the states.

Number of people of the Commonwealth (total population of the six states) = 23,729,561

Twice the number of Senators for the states = 144

Population quota = 164,788.61806 (as at 31 August 2017)

The determination

The number of members of the House of Representatives to be chosen in each state and territory was determined on 31 August 2017 by dividing the number of people in each state and territory by the quota and rounding the result to the nearest whole number.

State/territory Total population Population quota Result Members Change
New South Wales 7,797,791 164,788.61806 47.31996 47 -
Victoria 6,244,227 164,788.61806 37.89234 38 +1
Queensland 4,883,739 164,788.61806 29.63639 30 -
Western Australia 2,567,788 164,788.61806 15.58231 16 -
South Australia 1,716,966 164,788.61806 10.41920 10 -1
Tasmania 6 519,050 164,788.61806 3.14979 5 -
Australian Capital Territory 7 419,256 164,788.61806 2.54420 3 +1
Northern Territory 8 247,512 164,788.61806 1.50200 2 -
Total number of members of the House of Representatives 151 +1

6 Tasmania is guaranteed a minimum of five members under section 24 of the Constitution.

7 Under sub-section 4(1) of the Electoral Act the Jervis Bay territory is taken to be part of the ACT. Under sub-section 48(2C) of the Electoral Act, Norfolk Island taken for the purposes of this determination to be part of the ACT because it lacks sufficient population to qualify for representation in its own right.

8 Under sub-section 48(2C) of the Electoral Act, the territories of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Island are taken for the purposes of this determination to be part of the Northern Territory because they lack sufficient population to qualify for representation in their own right.

Past determinations to entitlement

The number of the people of the Commonwealth and of the several states and territories were ascertained on 13 November 2014
State/territory Number of the people1
States
New South Wales 7 500 617
Victoria 5 821 269
Queensland 4 708 510
Western Australia 2 565 588
South Australia 1 682 635
Tasmania 514 684
Territories2
Australian Capital Territory3 4 386 092
Northern Territory4 243 689
Australian Antarctic Territory 102
Territory of Heard Island and McDonald Islands 0
Coral Sea Islands Territory 4
Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands 0
The Commonwealth5 22 793 303

The population quota

Under section 48(2)(a) of the Electoral Act, the population quota is the number of the people of the Commonwealth divided by twice the number of Senators for the states.

Number of people of the Commonwealth (total population of the six states) = 22 793 303

Twice the number of Senators for the states = 144

Population quota = 158 286.8264 (as at 13 November 2014)

The determination

The number of members of the House of Representatives to be chosen in each state and territory was determined on 13 November 2014 by dividing the number of people in each state and territory by the quota and rounding the result to the nearest whole number.
State/territory6 Total population Population quota Result Members Change
New South Wales 7 500 617 158 286.8264 47.3862 47 -1
Victoria 5 821 269 158 286.8264 36.7767 37 -
Queensland 4 708 510 158 286.8264 29.7467 30 -
Western Australia 2 565 588 158 286.8264 16.2085 16 +1
South Australia 1 682 635 158 286.8264 10.6303 11 -
Tasmania7 514 684 158 286.8264 3.2516 5 -
Australian Capital Territory8 9 386 092 158 286.8264 2.4392 2 -
Northern Territory9 10 246 478 158 286.8264 1.5572 2 -
Total number of members of the House of Representatives 150  

  1. This ascertainment has been made using statistics supplied to the acting Electoral Commissioner by the acting Australian Statistician on 22 October 2014 in accordance with section 47 of the Electoral Act and published in the Australian Demographics Statistics, March 2014 Quarter (ABS Cat. no.3101.0) Table 8 on 25 September 2014.
  2. Under section 38A of the Electoral Act, the territory of Norfolk Island is not taken to be a territory for the purposes of this ascertainment.
  3. Under sub-section 4(1) of the Electoral Act, the Jervis Bay territory is taken to be part of the ACT.
  4. Under sub-section 46(2) of the Electoral Act, a Norfolk Island resident who is enrolled in a territory under sub-section 95AA(3) of the Electoral Act is included in the count of the population of the territory for the purposes of this ascertainment.
  5. Under section 45 of the Electoral Act the total number of people of the Commonwealth does not include the numbers of people of the territories.
  6. Under section 38A of the Electoral Act the territory of Norfolk Island is not taken to be a territory for the purposes of this determination.
  7. Tasmania is guaranteed a minimum of five members under section 24 of the Constitution.
  8. Under sub-section 4(1) of the Electoral Act the Jervis Bay territory is taken to be part of the ACT.
  9. Under sub-section 46(2) of the Electoral Act, a Norfolk Island resident who is enrolled in a territory under sub-section 95AA(3) of the Electoral Act is also included in the count of the population of the territory for the purposes of this determination.
  10. Under sub-section 48(2C) of the Electoral Act, the territories of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Island are taken for the purposes of this determination to be part of the Northern Territory because they lack sufficient population to qualify for representation in their own right.

Step one

The calculation is as follows:

Total population of the six states / (2 x number of Senators for the states) = Quota

The population of the six States divided by twice the number of Senators for the States.

21 883 246 / (72 x 2) = 151 966.9861 (as at 29 September 2011)

Step two

Total population of individual State or Territory1 / Quota = Number of members

Calculations for the states and territories
State Population Quota Entitlement Divisions
New South Wales 7 272 230 151 966.9861 47.8540 48
Victoria 5 585 573 36.7552 37
Queensland 4 548 700 29.9322 30
Western Australia 2 317 068 15.2472 15
South Australia 1 650 383 10.8601 11
Tasmania 509 292 3.3513 52
ACT3 362 424 2.3849 2
NT4 231 953 1.5263 2
Total 150

Note: In calculating step two, if the remainder is more than 0.5, the figure for the number of members is rounded up. If the remainder is less than or equal to 0.5, the figure is rounded down (i.e. 2.5 = 2 members, and 2.52 = 3 members).


  1. Under Section 38A of the Electoral Act, the territory of Norfolk Island is not taken to be a territory for this determination, but defined Norfolk Islanders are included in the population figures.
  2. The Constitution (s.24) grants Tasmania a minimum of five members in the House of Representatives.
  3. The population figure for the Australian Capital Territory includes Jervis Bay.
  4. The population figure for the Northern Territory includes Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Island.

When the next entitlement determination will occur

Under the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 (the Electoral Act), the Electoral Commissioner is required to use the latest official published statistics of the Commonwealth to ascertain the Australian population on the day after the one year anniversary of the first meeting of the House of Representatives.

The Electoral Commissioner then makes a determination of the number of members of the House of Representatives each state is entitled to. A similar exercise is used to calculate the entitlements of the territories.

How entitlement is determined

State and territory entitlements are calculated by dividing the total population figure for the Commonwealth, excluding territory populations, by twice the number of Senators for the states to obtain the population quota.

Total population of the six states / (Number of Senators for the states x 2) = Population quota

The population of each state and territory is then divided by the population quota, and the result rounded to the nearest whole number to determine the number of members of the House of the Representatives the state or territory is entitled to.

Total population of individual state or territory / Population quota = Number of members

Note: In calculating the number of members of the House of Representatives for a state or territory, if the remainder is more than 0.5, the figure for the number of members is rounded up. If the remainder is less than or equal to 0.5, the figure is rounded down (i.e. 2.5 = 2 members, and 2.52 = 3 members).

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