Overview of the AEC

Updated: 31 August 2015

The role of the Australian Electoral Commission is –

to deliver the franchise: that is, an Australian citizen's right to vote, as established by the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918.

The AEC is responsible for conducting federal elections and referendums and maintaining the Commonwealth electoral roll. The AEC also provides a range of electoral information and education programs and activities.

Between 1973 and 1984 it was known as the Australian Electoral Office and was first established as a branch of the Department of Home Affairs in 1902.

On 21 February 1984 following major amendments to the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 the Australian Electoral Commission was established as an independent statutory authority.


The AEC's ABN is 21 133 285 851

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