The 2017 mayoral and Hastings-Havelock North Ward by-elections have seen 19 per cent of residents return their voting papers - ahead of next week's deadline.

A Hastings District Council spokesperson said they had been using mainstream media and social media to remind people to vote.

"Hastings District Council encourages all people eligible to vote to do so. Voting closes at the end of next week (November 24) and papers have to be lodged with council by noon on that day."

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"Voters can either drop them into the polling booth at the council offices in Lyndon Rd, or post them in the freepost envelope. But if they're posting them, they need to make sure they are posted by 21 November at the latest."

They said it was sitting at "about the same level" as last year's local body election, given the number of days to go.

The local body election saw a total of 48.03 per cent of residents voting last year in the Hastings-Havelock North Area.

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Ten days out from the election, last year, it was sitting at 23.26 per cent.