Local government elections in Northern Ireland
The voting system
Single Transferable Vote.
Who am I voting
Councillors to represent you on your local council.
How to vote
Always read the instructions for filling in the ballot paper
carefully, even if you have voted before.
The ballot paper lists the name of
each candidate along with their party name, party logo and their
Rank the candidates in order of
preference. Put a 1 next to your first choice candidate, a 2 next
to your second choice, a 3 next to your third choice, and so on.
You can rank as few or as many candidates as you like.
If you make a mistake then you can ask
the polling staff to give you another ballot paper.
You may also be voting in other
elections on the same day.
Who is elected?
To be elected a candidate must reach a set amount of votes known
as the quota.
The votes are counted in stages. In
the first round only first preferences are counted. Anyone who
reaches the quota is elected. Any votes received over the quota are
not needed by the elected candidate and so are transferred to the
If not enough candidates have then
reached the quota, the candidate with the lowest number of votes is
eliminated and all of their votes are passed to the next preference
on the ballot papers. This process is repeated until enough
candidates have been elected to fill each seat in the ward.