Results have started coming in for the Wellington and Dubbo wards in the Dubbo Regional Council election.
Voting closed at 6pm Saturday night, which is when the counting began.
The latest update from the NSW Electoral Commission shows 2006 votes have been counted in central ward.
Independent Mathew Dickerson has more than 55 per cent of the formal votes. 965 first preference votes to his name have already been counted.
The Labor team has 350 votes. Vicki Etheridge has 132 votes, while Joe Knagge is currently on 33.
Of the votes already counted, the Ben Shields Team has 236. Ben Shields has 43 votes, while Nathan Ellis has six.
In the east ward 2388 wards have already been counted.
The Burns group has 390 votes. Lewis Burns has 170 first preference votes, while Della Burns has 21.
The Ben Shields Team has 458 votes. Jeremy Ellis, who is first on the ticket, has 17 while Trina Thornbury has five.
Damien Mahon has the most votes of the ungrouped candidates in the ward at 327. Tatum Moore has 274 votes, Rod Fardell has 235 and Ana Pateman has 89.
There have been 2534 votes counted in north ward.
Ungrouped candidate Matthew Wright is on 481 votes, Greg Matthews is on 240 and Mathew Smith is on 118.
The Labor group is on 240 votes. First on the ticket Pamela Smith has 135 votes and Peter Allen has 10.
The Ben Shields Team currently has 359 votes. Mick Catelotti has 28 so far while Ann Barnard has two.
The independent team is on 267. Grahame Miller has received 64 votes, while Karina McLachlain is on 15.
There have been 2543 votes counted in the south ward.
The Labor team has 566 first preference votes. Josh Black has 224 votes, while Greg Hough has eight.
There have been 395 votes for the Ben Shields Team. Greg Mohr has received 45 votes, Merrilyn Mulcahy is on six.
Shibli Chowdhury has 614 votes so far, while Kevin Parker is on 377.
Counting in the Wellington ward has slowed.
Ungrouped candidate Richard Ivey has 325 votes, followed by Anne Jones on 298 and Lizzy George on 107.
The Labor group has 254 first preference votes. Helen Swan, who is first on the ticket, has 69 while Christopher Bailey is on 12.
There have been 241 votes for the Ben Shields team. Jess Gough is on 64 votes, while Mikaela Solomons is on two.
Meanwhile, the 'yes' vote is in the lead in the referendum on the ward system. Of the votes counted so far, 76 per cent are in favour of abolishing the ward system.
More than 1700 votes have now been counted in the central ward.
Of the 1760 votes, 202 are informal.
Mathew Dickerson is leading in the ward with 881 votes.
The Labor team has 292 first preference votes. There are 120 votes for Vicki Etheridge and 32 for Joe Knagge.
The Ben Shields Team has 196 votes. Ben Shields has 32 votes, while Nathan Ellis has five.
Only 229 votes have been counted in the east ward so far.
There have been 50 votes for the Ben Shields team. Jeremy Ellis has three first preference votes, while Trina Thornbury has none.
There are 24 votes for the Burns team. Lewis Burns has 25 votes while Della Burns has three.
When it comes to the ungrouped candidates, Damien Mahon is on 43, Tatum Moore is on 21, Rod Fardell is on 16 and Ana Pateman has 13 votes.
The results are close in north ward.
Ungrouped candidate Matthew Wright is on 196. Greg Matthews is currently on 82, while Mathew Smith is on 48.
The Labor group has 138 votes. Pamella Wells is on 51 and Peter Allen is on six.
The Ben Shields Team has 171 first preference votes. Mick Catelotti is on 17 votes while Ann Barnard is on zero.
The independent group so far has 121 votes. Grahame Miller is on 29 while Karina McLachlain is on five.
There have been 2144 votes counted in the south ward.
It includes 245 informal votes.
The Labor team has 469 first preference votes. Josh Black has 196 votes, while Greg Hough has eight.
There have been 313 votes for the Ben Shields Team. Greg Mohr has received 34 votes, Merrilyn Mulcahy is on five.
Shibli Chowdhury has 554 votes so far, while Kevin Parker is on 320.
In Wellington, 1609 votes have been counted so far. It includes 313 informal votes.
Ungrouped candidate Richard Ivey has 324 first preference votes. Anne Jones has received 285 and Lizzy George has 95.
The Labor group has 231 votes. Helen Swan, who is first on the ticket, has 67 while Christopher Bailey is on 12.
There are 217 votes for the Ben Shields Team. Jessica Gough has 63, while Mikaela Solomons has two.
The first batch of results in the central ward have been released.
631 votes in the central ward have been counted. Of those, 103 are informal.
Independent candidate Mathew Dickerson has received 293 votes.
The Labor team has received 107 first preference votes. First in the group Vicki Etheridge has had 32 votes and Joe Knagge has 12.
The Ben Shields Team has so far received 71 above-the-line votes. Ben Shields himself has 12 votes, while Nathan Ellis has one.
There are 66 votes that have been counted in east ward.
Nine of the votes are informal.
Independent Damien Mahon has 10 votes, Tatum Moore has nine, Rod Fardell has four and Ana Pateman has four.
The Ben Shields Team has 10 votes. There's one first preference vote to first candidate Jeremy Ellis and none for Trina Thornbury.
There are also 10 for the Burns group. Lewis Burns is on nine first preference votes, while Della Burns is on zero.
In the north ward, 228 votes have been counted.
The Ben Shields Team has 69 votes. First on the ticket Mick Catelotti received eight votes, while Ann Barnard has none.
The Labor team has 31 votes. Pamella Wells is on 14 votes, while Peter Allen has two.
The independent team also has 31 votes. Grahame Miller has nine votes, while Karina McLachlain has none.
Stand-alone candidate Matt Wright is on 32 votes, Greg Matthew is on 14 and Mathew Smith is on five.
Almost 1000 votes have been counted in south ward. There have been 994 votes counted with 116 of those informal.
Shibli Chowdhury is sitting on 312 votes, while Kevin Parker is on 158.
The Labor team received 186 first preference votes. There were 87 votes directly for Josh Black and three for Greg Hough.
The Ben Shields Team is on 116. First in the group Greg Mohr received 13, while Merrilyn Mulcahy is on three.
There are now 1515 votes that have been counted in the Wellington ward.
Of those already counted, 295 votes are informal.
Richard Ivey is on 309 votes, Anne Jones is on 275 and Lizzy George is on 89.
The Labor team has 215 first preference votes. Helen Swan is on 61 and Christopher Bailey is on eight.
The Ben Shields Team has 201 votes. So far Jess Gough has received 60 votes and Mikaela Solomons is on two.
Meanwhile, the 'yes' vote is in the lead in the referendum on the ward system. Of the votes counted so far, 69 per cent are in favour of abolishing the ward system.
There are 289 votes that have been counted so far. Of those, 59 - just over 20 per cent - were informal.
The highest number of votes so far are for independent candidate Lizzy George at 55.
The other independent candidates are Richard Ivey with 40 votes and Anne Jones with 32.
The Labor group has received 49 votes. Thirteen votes have been for first in the group Helen Swan and two are for Christopher Bailey.
Meanwhile, the Ben Shields Team has 28 votes. Jess Gough is on 28, while her running mate Mikaela Solomons has zero.
Results in any of the four Dubbo wards have not been updated.
Meanwhile, the 'no' vote is currently winning the referendum.
Residents were asked 'Currently Dubbo Regional Council is divided into five wards that elect 10 councillors in total; do you favour abolishing this ward system in favour of a single area consisting of all voters that elects 11 councillors?'.
With 291 votes counted, it is currently at 65 per cent 'no'.
Here's how the votes are counted:
NSW local government elections use a form of preferential voting called proportional representational voting.
The minimum number of candidates to whom voters must give preference depends on the number of candidates who will be elected. For example, if two candidates are to be elected in each ward, voters must vote for the two candidates in order of preference - but can vote for more if they wish.
In areas where candidates are standing as part of a group, voters may instead vote above the line, as in Senate elections. In this case, preferences will be distributed according to the order that the group has determined.
A candidate must receive a "quota" of the total votes to be elected.
The quota is determined by first dividing the total number of formal votes by one more than the number of candidates to be elected. The quotient (disregarding the fraction) is increased by one to give the quota. After the count of first preferences is complete, each candidate who has reached quota is elected.
Where an elected candidate has a surplus of ballot papers over the quota, this surplus is transferred to the continuing candidates (i.e. those not yet elected or excluded).
If multiple candidates are elected, each candidate's surplus is transferred (one at a time) to the continuing candidates, from the highest surplus to the lowest.
This process continues with candidates being:
- Elected when their votes equal or exceed quota, with their surplus distributed as above or
- Excluded, with their ballot papers distributed as above
- No vacancies remain to be filled or
- The number of remaining candidates equals the number of remaining vacancies or
- All remaining vacancies can be filled by candidates whose total votes cannot be overtaken by the remaining candidates in the count.
In these circumstances, the elected candidates are elected despite not reaching the quota. It can several days, even weeks, to finalise.