How to vote for your local councillors

Foreigners with permanent residence can vote.

Illustrative photo, elections.Illustrative photo, elections. (Source: TASR)

Residents of Slovak cities and towns will soon elect their mayors, municipal councils, regional governors and regional councils.

For the first time, the municipal and regional elections are taking place on the same day: Saturday, October 29. Polling stations will remain open from 7:00 until 20:00.

Foreigners with permanent residence in Slovakia are eligible to be elected and cast their votes, too.

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Unlike the parliamentary and presidential elections, for which Slovak citizenship is a requirement, participation in municipal and regional elections is open to anyone registered as a permanently resident in Slovakia older than 18 years, including foreigners from any country.

During the elections, a voter can select one candidate for mayor and one candidate for regional governor (also sometimes referred to as a regional president or, informally in Slovak, as the župan). When voting for members of their municipal and regional councils, voters should be aware of the number of council seats available.

Different rules for different voters

Voters might become intrigued by an election billboard or flyer for the upcoming elections, yet it doesn’t mean that they will get to choose their favorite councilor.

If two friends living on neighboring streets agree to vote for a particular person, it is possible that one will find the names on the ballot and the other will not. There could be different names for each.

While in parliamentary elections voters all over Slovakia always choose the exact same ballot for one party and can prefer four candidates on it, in the upcoming municipal and county elections different rules may apply even for people from neighboring streets.

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Larger municipalities are divided into electoral boroughs. The Sme daily has prepared a series of questions and answers about the specifics of the upcoming elections of municipal councillors. The following rules don’t apply to candidates for regional councillors.

What councilors will voters get to vote for on October 29 in the local elections?

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