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By Chris Cave - Local Democracy Reporter
By Chris Cave - Local Democracy Reporter

Voters head to the polls in Local Authority Elections

Thu, 22 Jul 2021

Polls open at 8am this morning as voters in seven local authority areas cast their ballots.

It’s to decide who is to represent them for the next four-year term.

The election has been delayed twice because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A lack of candidates mean two thirds of commissioners boards on the Island are not being decided through public votes.

What’s the format for today’s ballot?

The time for talking is over and all candidates contesting today’s votes will find out their fate in the next few days.

Just like September’s general election for the House of Keys, the local authority polls are open for 12 hours until 20:00 this evening.

All ballot boxes will then be sealed before the votes are counted and the respective returning officers declare the result.

The number of vacant seats on each board determines how many candidates you can vote for.

For instance, the electorate can choose up to seven candidates in Onchan, but in Douglas there are just three elected members per ward.

Where do people go to vote?

Down south in Castletown, you’ll find the ballot boxes in the Civic Centre on Farrant’s Way.

In Douglas there are two polling stations per ward. In Douglas East, the options are St Andrew’s Church Hall or the Manx Youth Band on Derby Road; in the North ward

Cronk y Berry Primary School and the Mike Hailwood Centre are both open; while All Saints Church Hall and St Matthew’s Church Hall are the polling stations in Douglas Central.

Garff’s Lonan ward is choosing new representatives today, with voting open either at the Laxey Working Men’s Institute or the Baldrine Methodist Hall.

The Parish Hall in Jurby is where voters there should head to cast their ballots, while in Onchan it’s The Hub on School Road.
In Peel, the polling station is at the Corrin Hall on Derby Road, and the first election in Santon for more than 30 years will see the ballot box located at the Old School.

Can I vote if I have tested positive for Covid-19?

Anyone who has returned a positive PCR test must self-isolate by law, however, they may have been able to take part in the poll if they met the absent voter deadline.

Proxy voting is not allowed in the current legislation, so anybody who is in isolation will unfortunately have no say in the ballot.

Since last week, those identified as a close contact to someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 haven’t been required to self isolate, unless returning a positive PCR test themselves.

Anyone unsure on what to do is urged to call 111.

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