Is it time to vote out the ward system?
It seems like a few years ago now, and it was, when back in 2017 we last were able to go to the polls to elect our local representatives.
Back then for the first time Dubbo residents had the ward system forced upon us.
Five wards to cover each of the five areas of the new Dubbo Local Government Area, which back then had just been amalgamated with Wellington as well.
There were four in Dubbo - North, South, Central and East and one in Wellington. Two candidates were elected from each ward to represent the people of that ward.
You don't have to live in a ward to nominate for election for that ward, but you were only allowed to vote for candidates who put their hands up for the ward you were living in.
Now, we're going to get a choice as to whether we, as ratepayers, think they are working or not.
The short answer from 2017 seemed to be 'not'.
The candidates and voters simply didn't like it. It caused confusion and frustration for too many voters and limited their voting choices to those candidates standing in their ward.
The system was imposed on the Dubbo, where residents were used to voting for their favoured candidates on a cross-city basis. Wellington voters were in one ward, so for them voting was much the same ... except it was for a vastly different council.
The councillors elected said at the time they would get rid of the Dubbo wards in line with voter complaints and wishes - and now it's our chance to do that.
Councillors have tried several times over the years. They have also tried to have a Wellington Ward and Dubbo Ward (The government wouldn't come to that saying all the wards had to have similar population numbers).
So now it's our turn.
We get to have our say at a referendum.
While we're voting in wards come December 4, maybe it will be the second, and last time we have to vote this way.
It all depends on what the majority want.
Do you have something to say? We welcome your letters which may run in print and online.