A Message from the WA Electoral Commission

Published on Friday, 6 October 2023 at 2:00:00 PM

It was brought to the Shire’s attention by concerned electors and Candidates in the upcoming Local Government Elections (2023) that there was a watermark found on the ballot papers.

We have been in direct communication with Linda Wilson, the Returning Officer for the Shire of Donnybrook Balingup (appointed by the WA Electoral Commission) to best understand why they are there and to provide clear, accurate information to our community members.

Linda has assured the Shire that these watermarks are very normal, and that the watermark with the words ‘Illegal Copy’ act as an embedded security watermark. This watermark is set out as dots in a diagonal pattern across the Candidates’ names.

“This watermark acts as a safeguard in the event of an original ballot paper being photocopied. If the ballot paper is copied, this watermark automatically expands the size and appearance of the dotted words (‘Illegal Copy’) making them completely visible and obvious to election staff that it is, in fact, a copy and it will not be included in the count,” explained Linda.

Should anyone have any concerns or further questions, please contact Linda directly via the following:


The Shire of Donnybrook Balingup would like to extend its thanks to those who asked – we are very proud to have such a caring and proactive community.



Download the article here:

Media Release (6 October 2023)

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