2020 Queensland State Election Issues
Many constituents have reported concerns regarding the voting system resulting in a significant number of voters missing out on their opportunity to cast a vote in the 2020 State Election.
I believe aged care residents and rural and regional voters were disadvantaged the most.
I have written to the Electoral Commission of Queensland and asked for a review of the preventable problems I have been alerted to.
A summary of the items I have asked the Commissioner to address:
Postal Votes - Ballots received late or not at all.
The ECQ was ill-equipped to handle postal voting adequately and seemed to have little awareness of the ability of Australia Post to deliver on time, especially in rural areas.
Residents of Aged Care institutions were given limited voting options resulting in many residents not having the chance to cast a vote.
There were not enough early voting booth locations.
I believe one week of pre-polling would have been sufficient and more cost effective.
Lack of toilet facilities at polling booths for volunteers and the public.
.Voters on Election Day were told that they had already voted.
Computers needed to be reset for this to be corrected and this had been happening all day in several locations.
Election timeline - The date of the 2020 Queensland Election has been a well-known fact for a very long time.
The closing date for candidate nominations should have been at least a week earlier, allowing ballot papers to be printed and posted in time to be delivered, completed, and returned for counting.
Communication - the reliance on online communication due to the closure of many newspapers in regional and rural Queensland left a gaping hole in information about the election.
There was a lack of communication from the ECQ to voters regarding their voting options.
Television, radio, and newsprint (where still available) would have been a more effective communication tool than online and social media information.
Many rural and elderly constituents do not have access to the internet or mobile phone service, relying on mail, television, radio, and newsprint.
The Electoral Commission has announced that there will be no fines issued for those who did not receive their ballots in time, but I believe that they are missing the point.
In many electorates, counting of votes continues and may be decided by a handful of votes.
Colin Boyce MP
Member for Callide
Sizzlers closure marks the end of an Era
There are many victims of Covid-19. While governments set boundaries, the economy immediately impacted everyone.
Business suddenly closed, essential services restricted and workers lost jobs. Parents became educators. In confined quarters, relationship violence escalated in already dysfunctional homes.
Covid restrictions shut down restaurants. It was untenable in the long term, with nowhere for families and groups eating out. Slowly the economy recovered over six months, but too slow to save our favourites. Alternatively, the home food delivery services trend boomed.
It is the end of an era for our favourite, four popular Queensland "Sizzlers", on 15 November, sadly missed. Where to in 2021 for such value and pleasant atmosphere?