Thursday, December 16, 2010

2010 Victorian State Election - Legislative Council - BTL preference data files

We have published a full set of the below-the-line preference data files for the Victorian Legislative Council  that Victoria's Chief Electoral Commissioner, Steve Tully, refused to publish during the progress of the count.

13 Million dollars spent on software development and the VEC is unable or unwilling to make this crucial data available? Why?

Each zip file contains both the preliminary data set and the final data set as supplied by the Victorian Electoral Commission after the completion of the ballot.

  • Eastern Metro BTL Preference (687k) Download
  • Eastern Victoria BTL Preference (664)k Download
  • Northern Metro BTL Preference (1232k) Download
  • Northern Victoria BTL Preference (704k) Download
  • South Eastern Metro BTL Preference (549k) Download
  • Southern Metro BTL Preference (1025k) Download
  • Western Metro BTL Preference (806k) Download
  • Western Victoria BTL Preference (590k) Download

In 2006 Steve Tully refused to provide copies of the Legislative Council below-the line data files,  (We had to make an  FOI application for the data and then he only provided count B data for Western Metropolitan. When requested by the Victorian Parliamentary Electoral Matters Committee to provide copies of the Count A data files, Steve Tully claimed that the data had been destroyed and overwritten and that no backup copies were made,  An extraordinary claim given that its costs millions of dollars to collate this information and it is hard to believe that any professional organisation would not have implemented backup procedures of the requested data. At a cost of 13 million dollars in software development it is hard to believe that backup copies were name made or were destroyed.

In 2010 Steve Tully once again refused to provide scrutineers copies of the below the line preference data files, this denying scrutineers the right to properly scrutinise the election. . This data which should have been published on on progressively as the count preceded has been now been made available but not yet published by the VEC.

We believe that this information should be readily available and that the election process must be open and transparent.   Steve Tully claims that he is not required to publish this data.  There are a lot of things he is not required to do but he does have an obligation and a duty to ensure that our public elections are open and transparent.  In not publishing this information live, as was the case with the election night polling place results Steve Tully has and continues to bring the conduct of the State Election into disrepute.  There is nothing in law that prevents this information being made public. It is a public document that the public have a right of access to. Copies of the preference data files was made available during the counting of the 2008 City of Melbourne municipal election. Why not the State election?

If Steve Tully cannot self regulate in the interest of maintaining an honest and transparent election he should resign and  the Victorian Parliament must legislate to ensure that this information is readily available progressively during the count

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