Local elections are held by postal vote. Once voting opens, New Zealand Post delivers voting papers to all enrolled voters.

When an election is underway, once received you should complete your voting document, seal it in the return postage-paid envelope and post or deliver it to the Electoral Officer. Locations for delivery will be published with elections information. 

Anyone who is not able to complete a postal vote independently due to disability is invited to contact the Electoral Officer. 

If you don't receive any voting papers, you can request a special vote. There are many reasons you could cast a special vote, including:

  • your name does not appear on the final electoral roll, but you qualify as an elector 
  • you have chosen to put your name on the unpublished (confidential) roll
  • you have moved since the electoral roll was compiled (and have lived at your new residential address for one month or more)
  • you spoilt, lost or did not receive your ordinary voting document 
  • you will be away from your residential address during the voting period
  • you are eligible to vote for some positions in the elections as a ratepayer elector (for a property you own but do not live in)

If you aren't on the electoral roll and you need to request a special vote, you'll need to enrol. Visit the Electoral Commission(external link), call 0800 36 76 56, or freetext your name and address to 3676. 

You will need to complete a statutory declaration when you cast a special vote. This is a legal requirement to protect voters against possible duplicate voting.  The statutory declaration will be provided to the person casting a special vote, along with a special voting paper and candidate information booklet.

Where can I get my special voting documents?

Special voting documents for the 2021 Coastal ward councillor by-election will be available from the day voting opens on 16 September 2021. Watch this space for details.

If you have any questions about special voting, please contact Electoral Officer Jo Daly on 03 941 8581 or jo.daly@ccc.govt.nz

Christchurch City Council has two decision-making parts: the Council and Community Boards.

During the local elections, you can vote for:

  • the mayor and a ward councillor
  • community board members

You can find your ward and community board on this map

The term for elected members is three years.


The Council is made up of the Mayor and 16 Councillors. It makes decisions important to Christchurch as a whole.

All Christchurch voters elect the Mayor, while Councillors are elected by voters from the ward they represent.

Community Boards

Christchurch's seven community boards represent their individual areas and cover two to three wards.

Each community board has between six and nine members, elected by voters from the areas they represent.

Councillors are also members of the community board covering their ward.

Community boards make decisions on local issues, activities and facilities, and help build strong communities.

Kids voting gives young people aged 11 to 15 years (school years 7 to 10) the opportunity to experience an election first hand.

Students vote for real candidates on real issues and can see how their results compare to the official election results.

Find out more about kids voting on Local Government New Zealand's website.(external link)