Oz Blog News Commentary

Victorian state redistribution – summary of changes

July 2, 2021 - 09:30 -- Admin

The draft electoral boundaries for Victoria’s next state election were released on Wednesday. Significant population growth on the outer fringe of Melbourne has seen significant changes over the last eight years. This has resulted in three seats being abolished and three others split in half. Meanwhile one of the eight upper house regions has significantly changes character, and name, as it moves further north of the Yarra.

I haven’t made any estimates of vote margin. I will be doing this next, but I’m currently in the middle of moving house so it may be some time before I get that done. In the meantime, check out Antony Green’s estimates.

You can also check out the following maps. You can toggle on and off the 2014-2018 electoral boundaries (red) and the draft 2022 boundaries (blue). You can also toggle on and off the names of each seat, using the same colour scheme.

The Electoral Boundaries Commission report claimed that ten seats had been abolished and ten others created, but I beg to differ. Five of these ten seats were actually just renaming:

  • Altona -> Point Cook
  • Burwood -> Ashwood
  • Forest Hill -> Glen Waverley
  • Mill Park -> Morang
  • Wendouree -> Eureka

Then there are three seats, all on the outer fringe of Melbourne, where the seat was split into two halves:

  • Gembrook – Berwick and Pakenham
  • Footscray – Footscray and Laverton
  • Yuroke – Greenvale and Kalkallo

If I’m really pushed, I would designate Pakenham, Footscray and Kalkallo as the successor seats, but in all three cases the other seat has a large part of the old seat. In the case of Yuroke, Kalkallo contains 50.5% of the old seat, and Greenvale has 49.5%, so it really is a technicality to consider one seat to be “new” and the other to be continuing.

Then three other seats were abolished: Kingsborough, Mount Waverley and Ferntree Gully. All three are in the south-east of Melbourne.

The EBC report estimated that 22.8% of electors have moved seats. Once I take into account these continuations I actually think it’s more like 17.4%.

The net effect of these changes is to reduce the number of seats in Melbourne to the south and east of the Yarra by two, and increase the number to the north and west of the Yarra by two.

This then has knock-on effects on the Legislative Council regions. The Northern Metropolitan and Western Metropolitan regions each gain one extra seat, which must be balanced out. Essendon is moved from the West to the North to balance out the Western region, and then two seats must be moved from Northern Metropolitan to balance out the changes.

Bundoora and Mill Park/Morang are moved into the Eastern Metropolitan region, necessitating a change in name to North-Eastern Metropolitan region. There are now four out of eleven seats in this region to the north of the river, up from just one in the original region drawn before the 2006 election. I’m sure this will have an impact on the vote balance in that region once I calculate those numbers.

The seat of Berwick, which is created as an offshoot of Gembrook, is then placed in the South-Eastern Metropolitan region to compensate for the abolition of Keysborough.

That’s it for now. I’ll be back when I’ve finished my estimates.