Voting returns for this year's local body elections are slower than in previous years, according to figures released on the Tararua District Council website.

Returning officer Sandy Lowe said as at yesterday the voter return was 32.87 per cent.

At the same point in the election of 2016 the figure was 36.87 per cent and in 2013 was 36.41 per cent.

The final voter return figure for 2016 was 53.45 per cent, up on the 2013 final figure of 50.47 per cent.

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"We are expecting a large influx of returns in this last week," said Lowe.

Voting papers will need to be in by noon Saturday.

"Our service centres at Dannevirke, Woodville, Pahiatua and Eketahuna will be open from 9am until 12pm on Saturday, for voting purposes only, to receive any last-minute votes."

Preliminary results, after all ordinary votes are counted, will be available as soon as possible afterwards, Lowe said.

Official results, including all valid ordinary votes and special votes, will be declared between October 17 and 23, or as soon as practicable.