Divisions of the Australian House of Representatives

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Map of the 151 electoral divisions to the House of Representatives (blank) in use for the 2019 election. Australian Electoral Divisions 2019.png
Map of the 151 electoral divisions to the House of Representatives (blank) in use for the 2019 election.
The population of each Australian electoral division Population per Australian electoral division.png
The population of each Australian electoral division

In Australia, electoral districts for the Australian House of Representatives are called divisions or more commonly referred to as electorates or seats. There are currently 151 single-member electorates for the Australian House of Representatives.

Contents

Section 24 of the Constitution of Australia specifies that the total number of members of the Australian House of Representatives shall be "as nearly as practicable" twice as many as the number of members of the Australian Senate. The section also requires that electorates be apportioned among the states in proportion to their respective populations; provided that each original state has at least 5 members in the House of Representatives, a provision that has given Tasmania higher representation than its population would otherwise justify. There are three electorates in the Australian Capital Territory and even though the Northern Territory should have only one electorate based on their population, parliament have legislated that they receive two.

In addition, Section 29 forbids electorate boundaries from crossing state lines, forcing populated areas along state and territory borders to be placed in different electorates, such as Albury in New South Wales being part of the electorate of Farrer, while nearby Wodonga in Victoria is part of the electorate of Indi. The same restriction does not apply to territories, and several current electoral divisions incorporate electors from multiple territories. This is currently the case for the Division of Bean (covering part of the ACT and the whole of Norfolk Island), the Division of Fenner (covering part of the ACT and the whole of Jervis Bay Territory), and the Division of Lingiari (covering part of the Northern Territory and the whole of Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands).

The Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 sets out further provisions. [1]

Apportionment and redistribution

The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) determines the number of members of the House of Representatives to which each state and territory is entitled (called apportionment) and the boundaries of each electorate, in a process known as redistribution. Such apportionment and redistributions apply to the next federal election, but not to any by-elections. The last apportionment determination was made in July 2020, and the resulting redistribution is to take place during 2021, in time for the next federal election, due by 2022.

Within each state and territory, electoral boundaries are redrawn from time to time. This takes place at least once every 7 years, or when the state's entitlement to the number of members of the House of Representatives changes. Boundaries are drawn by a Redistribution Committee, and redistributions within a state are on the basis of the number of enrolled voters, rather than total residents or "population". The number of enrolled voters in each division cannot vary by more than 10% from the average across a state or territory, nor can the number of voters vary by more than 3.5% from the average projected enrolment 3.5 years into the future. However, due to various reasons, larger seats like Cowper in New South Wales contain 80% more electors than that of smaller seats like Solomon in the Northern Territory. In 2018, seats in Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia were also abolished, in order to make way for seats in similar locations but with different names. [2] [3]

At the 2019 Australian federal election, based on the 2018 apportionment, there were 151 divisions: 47 in New South Wales, 38 in Victoria, 30 in Queensland, 16 in Western Australia, 10 in South Australia, 5 in Tasmania, 3 in the ACT and 2 in Northern Territory.

Naming

The divisions of the House of Representatives are unusual in that many of them are not named after geographical features or numbered, as is the case in most other legislatures around the world. Most divisions are named in honour of prominent historical people, such as former politicians (often Prime Ministers), explorers, artists and engineers.

In some cases where a division is named after a geographical locality, the connection to that locality is sometimes tenuous. For instance, the Division of Werriwa, created in 1901, was named after the Aboriginal word for Lake George in the Canberra region. However, Werriwa has not contained Lake George for many decades, and has steadily moved some 200 km north to the south-western suburbs of Sydney over the past century.

List of current electoral divisions

The divisions that existed at the 2019 Australian federal election appear in the table below. A redistribution took place in Victoria and Western Australia. As a result of this the division of Stirling in Western Australia will be abolished, and a new division called Hawke will be created in Victoria, named for former prime minister, Bob Hawke.

NameFormedStateSize (km2)NamesakeKnown for
Adelaide 1903South Australia76City of Adelaide Geographic location
Aston 1984Victoria113 Tilly Aston Teacher
Ballarat 1901Victoria4,322City of Ballarat Geographic location
Banks 1949New South Wales53 Joseph Banks Botanist
Barker 1903South Australia63,886 Collet Barker Explorer
Barton 1922New South Wales40 Edmund Barton Prime Minister
Bass 1903Tasmania7,975 George Bass Explorer
Bean 2019Australian Capital Territory

Norfolk Island

1,913 Charles Bean War correspondent, historian
Bendigo 1901Victoria5,496City of Bendigo Geographic location
Bennelong 1949New South Wales60 Bennelong Aboriginal elder
Berowra 1969New South Wales786Suburb of Berowra Geographic location
Blair 1998Queensland6,472 Harold Blair Aboriginal singer
Blaxland 1949New South Wales61 Gregory Blaxland Explorer
Bonner 2004Queensland374 Neville Bonner Aboriginal politician
Boothby 1903South Australia130 William Boothby Electoral commissioner
Bowman 1949Queensland536 David Bowman Politician
Braddon 1955Tasmania21,369 Edward Braddon Premier of Tasmania
Bradfield 1949New South Wales101 John Bradfield Designer of the Sydney Harbour Bridge
Brand 1984Western Australia377 David Brand Premier of Western Australia
Brisbane 1901Queensland57City of Brisbane Geographic location
Bruce 1955Victoria95 Stanley Bruce Prime Minister
Burt 2016Western Australia172 Archibald, Septimus and Francis Burt
Calare 1906New South Wales32,666Aboriginal name for the Lachlan River Geographic location
Calwell 1984Victoria265 Arthur Calwell Leader of the opposition
Canberra 1974Australian Capital Territory312City of Canberra Geographic location
Canning 1949Western Australia6,304 Alfred Canning Surveyor of the Rabbit-proof fence
Capricornia 1901Queensland90,903 Tropic of Capricorn Geographic location
Casey 1969Victoria2,466 Richard Casey Governor General
Chifley 1969New South Wales126 Ben Chifley Prime Minister
Chisholm 1949Victoria65 Caroline Chisholm Philanthropist
Clark 2019Tasmania292 Andrew Inglis Clark Co-author of the Australian Constitution
Cook 1969New South Wales94 James Cook Explorer
Cooper 2019Victoria60 William Cooper Aboriginal Activist
Corangamite 1901Victoria5,441 Lake Corangamite Geographic location
Corio 1901Victoria773 Corio Bay Geographic location
Cowan 1984Western Australia180 Edith Cowan Politician and activist
Cowper 1901New South Wales7,296 Charles Cowper NSW premier
Cunningham 1949New South Wales519 Allan Cunningham Explorer
Curtin 1949Western Australia98 John Curtin Prime Minister
Dawson 1949Queensland14,630 Anderson Dawson Premier of Queensland
Deakin 1937Victoria79 Alfred Deakin Prime Minister
Dickson 1992Queensland724 James Robert Dickson Premier of Queensland
Dobell 1984New South Wales787 William Dobell Painter
Dunkley 1984Victoria152 Louisa Margaret Dunkley Labour unionist and women's rights campaigner
Durack 2010Western Australia1,629,858 Mary Durack Author
Eden-Monaro 1901New South Wales41,617Town of Eden and region of Monaro Geographic location
Fadden 1977Queensland387 Arthur Fadden Prime Minister
Fairfax 1984Queensland1,004 Ruth Fairfax Founder of the Country Women's Association
Farrer 1949New South Wales126,590 William Farrer Scientist
Fenner 2016Australian Capital Territory

Jervis Bay Territory

238 Frank Fenner Scientist
Fisher 1949Queensland1,198 Andrew Fisher Prime Minister
Flinders 1901Victoria871 Matthew Flinders Explorer
Flynn 2006Queensland132,824 John Flynn Founder of the Royal Flying Doctor Service
Forde 1984Queensland418 Frank Forde Prime Minister
Forrest 1922Western Australia11,072 John Forrest Explorer, Premier of Western Australia
Fowler 1984New South Wales69 Lilian Fowler Mayor of Newtown
Franklin 1903Tasmania10,009 John Franklin Explorer
Fraser 2019Victoria106 Malcolm Fraser Prime Minister
Fremantle 1901Western Australia196City of Fremantle Geographic location
Gellibrand 1949Victoria124 Joseph Gellibrand Attorney General of Tasmania
Gilmore 1984New South Wales6,342 Mary Gilmore Poet and author
Gippsland 1901Victoria33,182Region of Gippsland Geographic location
Goldstein 1984Victoria50 Vida Goldstein Suffragette
Gorton 2004Victoria540 John Gorton Prime Minister
Grayndler 1949New South Wales32 Edward Grayndler Politician and unionist
Greenway 1984New South Wales81 Francis Greenway Architect
Grey 1903South Australia904,881 George Grey Governor of South Australia
Griffith 1934Queensland57 Samuel Griffith Premier of Queensland, Chief Justice of Australia
Groom 1984Queensland5,586 Littleton Groom Politician
Hasluck 2001Western Australia1,192 Paul and Alexandra Hasluck Governor General and author
Herbert 1901Queensland946 Robert Herbert Premier of Queensland
Higgins 1949Victoria41 H. B. Higgins Politician and judge
Hindmarsh 1903South Australia78 John Hindmarsh Governor of South Australia
Hinkler 1984Queensland3,504 Bert Hinkler Aviator
Holt 1969Victoria266 Harold Holt Prime Minister
Hotham 1969Victoria83 Charles Hotham Governor of Victoria
Hughes 1955New South Wales369 Billy Hughes Prime Minister
Hume 1901New South Wales17,240 Hamilton Hume Explorer
Hunter 1901New South Wales10,640 John Hunter NSW Governor
Indi 1901Victoria29,187Aboriginal name for the Murray River Geographic location
Isaacs 1969Victoria155 Isaac Isaacs Governor General, Chief Justice of Australia
Jagajaga 1984Victoria104Three Wurundjeri elders
Kennedy 1901Queensland567,377 Edmund Kennedy Explorer
Kingsford Smith 1949New South Wales91 Charles Kingsford Smith Aviator
Kingston 1949South Australia171 Charles Kingston Premier of South Australia
Kooyong 1901Victoria55Suburb of Kooyong Geographic location
La Trobe 1949Victoria748 Charles La Trobe Governor of Victoria
Lalor 1949Victoria493 Peter Lalor Leader of the Eureka Rebellion
Leichhardt 1949Queensland109,455 Ludwig Leichhardt Explorer
Lilley 1913Queensland144 Charles Lilley Premier and Chief Justice of Queensland
Lindsay 1984New South Wales339 Norman Lindsay Artist
Lingiari 2001Northern Territory

Christmas Island

Cocos (Keeling) Islands

1,352,371 Vincent Lingiari Aboriginal activist
Longman 1996Queensland1,237 Irene Longman Politician
Lyne 1949New South Wales16,099 William Lyne NSW premier
Lyons 1984Tasmania35,721 Joseph and Enid Lyons Prime Minister and politician
Macarthur 1949New South Wales363 John and Elizabeth Macarthur Pioneers of early settlement
Mackellar 1949New South Wales233 Charles and Dorothea Mackellar Politician and poet
Macnamara 2019Victoria41 Jean Macnamara Scientist
Macquarie 1901New South Wales4,374 Lachlan Macquarie Governor of NSW
Makin 1984South Australia130 Norman Makin Politician
Mallee 1949Victoria81,962Region of The Mallee Geographic location
Maranoa 1901Queensland729,897 Maranoa River Geographic location
Maribyrnong 1906Victoria64 Maribyrnong River Geographic location
Mayo 1984South Australia9,315 Helen Mayo Doctor
McEwen 1984Victoria2,670 John McEwen Prime Minister
McPherson 1949Queensland229 McPherson Range Geographic location
McMahon 2010New South Wales168 William McMahon Prime Minister
Melbourne 1901Victoria40City of Melbourne Geographic location
Menzies 1984Victoria184 Robert Menzies Prime Minister
Mitchell 1949New South Wales101 Thomas Mitchell Explorer
Monash 2019Victoria8,879 John Monash General and head of the armed forces
Moncrieff 1984Queensland100 Gladys Moncrieff Singer
Moore 1949Western Australia90 George Fletcher Moore Early WA settler
Moreton 1901Queensland109 Moreton Bay Geographic location
New England 1901New South Wales66,394Region of New England Geographic location
Newcastle 1901New South Wales171City of Newcastle Geographic location
Nicholls 2019Victoria14,768 Douglas and Gladys Nicholls Aboriginal activists
North Sydney 1901New South Wales53Suburb of North Sydney Geographic location
O'Connor 1980Western Australia868,576 C. Y. O'Connor Engineer
Oxley 1949Queensland159 John Oxley Explorer
Page 1984New South Wales19,342 Earle Page Prime Minister
Parkes 1984New South Wales393,413 Henry Parkes Governor of NSW
Parramatta 1901New South Wales57Suburb of Parramatta Geographic location
Paterson 1949, 1993New South Wales1,123 Banjo Paterson Author and poet
Pearce 1989Western Australia13,250 George Pearce Politician
Perth 1901Western Australia80City of Perth Geographic location
Petrie 1949Queensland152 Andrew Petrie Architect
Rankin 1984Queensland131 Annabelle Rankin Politician
Reid 1922New South Wales55 George Reid Prime Minister
Richmond 1901New South Wales2,148 Richmond River Geographic location
Riverina 1901, 1993New South Wales48,988Region of The Riverina Geographic location
Robertson 1901New South Wales980 John Robertson Premier of NSW
Ryan 1949Queensland370 T. J. Ryan Premier of Queensland
Scullin 1968Victoria116 James Scullin Prime Minister
Shortland 1949New South Wales265 John Shortland Explorer
Solomon 2000Northern Territory337 Vaiben Louis Solomon Premier of South Australia
Spence 2019South Australia532 Catherine Helen Spence Politician, author
Stirling 1955Western Australia74 James Stirling Governor of Western Australia
Sturt 1949South Australia85 Charles Sturt Explorer
Swan 1901Western Australia134 Swan River Geographic location
Sydney 1968New South Wales44City of Sydney Geographic location
Tangney 1974Western Australia83 Dorothy Tangney Politician
Warringah 1922New South Wales68 Warringah Council Geographic location
Wannon 1901Victoria33,419 Wannon River Geographic location
Watson 1992New South Wales47 Chris Watson Prime Minister
Wentworth 1901New South Wales38 William Wentworth Explorer
Werriwa 1901New South Wales172Aboriginal name for Lake George Geographic location
Whitlam 2016New South Wales1,331 Gough Whitlam Prime Minister
Wide Bay 1901Queensland14,227Region of Wide Bay–Burnett Geographic location
Wills 1949Victoria46 William John Wills Explorer
Wright 2009Queensland7,577 Judith Wright Poet

Abolished divisions

These divisions no longer exist:

NameFormedAbolishedStateNamesakeKnown for
Angas (I) 19031934SA George Fife Angas Businessman and banker
Angas (II) 19491977SA
Australian Capital Territory 19491974ACTAustralian Capital TerritoryGeographic location
Balaclava 19011984VICSuburb of Balaclava Geographic location
Barrier 19011922NSW Barrier Ranges Geographic location
Batman 19062019VIC John Batman Founder of Melbourne
Bland 19011906NSW William Bland Doctor
Bonython 19552004SA John Langdon Bonython Editor and newspaper proprietor
Bourke 19011949VIC Richard Bourke Governor of NSW
Burke (I) 19491955VIC Robert O'Hara Burke Explorer
Burke (II) 19692004VIC
Canobolas 19011906NSW Mount Canobolas Geographic location
Charlton 19842016NSW Matthew Charlton Politician
Cook (I) 19061955NSW James Cook Explorer
Coolgardie 19011913WATown of Coolgardie Geographic location
Corinella (I) 19011906VIC Corinella regionGeographic location
Corinella (II) 19901996VIC
Dalley 19011969NSW William Bede Dalley Politician and barrister
Dampier 19131922WA William Dampier Explorer
Darebin 19491969VIC Darebin Creek Geographic location
Darling 19011977NSW Darling River Geographic location
Darling Downs 19011984QLD Darling Downs Geographic location
Darwin 19031955TAS Charles Darwin Scientist
Denison 19032019TAS William Denison Governor of Van Diemen's Land and NSW
Diamond Valley 19691984VIC Diamond Creek Geographic location
Dundas 19771993NSW Henry Dundas Scottish politician and aristocrat
East Sydney 19011969NSW East Sydney Geographic location
Echuca 19011937VICTown of Echuca Geographic location
Evans 19491977NSW George Evans Explorer
Fawkner 19061969VIC John Pascoe Fawkner Pioneer
Fraser (I) 19742016ACT Jim Fraser Politician
Grampians 19011922VIC Grampians Ranges Geographic location
Gwydir 19012007NSW Gwydir River Geographic location
Hawker 19691993SA Charles Hawker Politician
Henty 19131990VIC Henty familyPioneers
Higinbotham 19491969VIC George Higinbotham Chief Justice of Victoria
Hoddle 19491955VIC Robert Hoddle Surveyor, artist
Illawarra 19011922NSWRegion of Illawarra Geographic location
Isaacs (I) 19491969VIC Isaac Isaacs Governor General, Chief Justice of Australia
Kalgoorlie 19012010WACity of Kalgoorlie Geographic location
Laanecoorie 19011913VIC Laanecoorie Geographic location
Lang 19011977NSW John Dunmore Lang Politician and activist
Lawson 19491969NSW Henry Lawson Writer and poet
Lowe 19492010NSW Robert Lowe British statesman
Martin 19221955NSW James Martin Premier of NSW, Chief Justice of NSW
McMillan 19492019VIC Angus McMillan Pioneer
Melbourne Ports 19012019VICSuburb of Port Melbourne Geographic location
Mernda 19011913VICTown of Mernda Geographic location
Moira 19011906VIC Shire of Moira Geographic location
Murray 19492019VIC Murray River Geographic location
Namadgi 19961998ACT Namadgi National Park Geographic location
Nepean 19061922NSW Evan Nepean British politician
Northern Melbourne 19011906VIC North Melbourne Geographic location
Northern Territory 19222001NT Northern Territory Geographic location
Oxley (I) 19011934QLD John Oxley Explorer
Parkes (I) 19011969NSW Henry Parkes Premier of NSW
Phillip 19491993NSW Arthur Phillip Governor of NSW
Port Adelaide 19492019SASuburb of Port Adelaide Geographic location
Prospect 19692010NSW Prospect Reservoir Geographic location
Riverina-Darling 19841993NSW Riverina regionGeographic location
Scullin (I) 19551969VIC James Scullin Prime Minister
South Australia 19011903SA South Australia Geographic location
South Sydney 19011934NSW Southern Sydney Geographic location
Southern Melbourne 19011906VIC South Melbourne Geographic location
St George 19491993NSW St George areaGeographic location
Streeton 19841990VIC Arthur Streeton Painter
Tasmania 19011903TAS Tasmania Geographic location
Throsby 19842016NSW Charles Throsby Explorer
Wakefield 19032019SA Edward Gibbon Wakefield Pioneer
Watson (I) 19341969NSW Chris Watson Prime Minister
West Sydney 19011969NSWArea of Western Sydney Geographic location
Wilmot 19031984TAS Sir John Eardley-Wilmot Lieutenant-Governor of Van Diemen's Land
Wimmera 19011977VIC Wimmera region Geographic location
Yarra 19011969VIC Yarra River Geographic location

See also

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References

  1. "Research Report 4 – Australian Federal Redistributions 1901–2003: The Redistribution process". aec.gov.au. Australian Electoral Commission. 30 May 2013. Retrieved 5 May 2008.
  2. "Determination of membership entitlement to the House of Representatives". aec.gov.au. Australian Electoral Commission. 31 August 2017. Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  3. Green, Antony. "2017-18 Federal Redistributions". abc.com.au. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 20 July 2018.