The local body elections are just around the corner and it is time to have your say.

You have probably received letters and flyers in the letterbox from candidates and tickets standing for election, seen the hoardings and followed the contests in the news and on social media.

Today, postal voting papers go out to choose who you want as your mayor, on your local council, community board, district health board or licensing trust.

You have three weeks to make your choice before voting closes at noon on October 12.

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It's simple and easy to vote. Just fill out the voting paper and return it by post before October 12.

You will need to post your voting paper by October 8 to make sure it reaches the electoral office on time.

If you miss this date, you can still vote by putting your envelope into a ballot box before noon on October 12.

Sir Peter Jackson is supporting Andy Foster(left) in the Wellington mayoral race. Photo / Georgina Campbell
Sir Peter Jackson is supporting Andy Foster(left) in the Wellington mayoral race. Photo / Georgina Campbell

One of the most interesting stories at the 2019 elections has been film mogul Sir Peter Jackson throwing his support - and funding - behind Wellington mayoral contender Andy Foster, who is challenging sitting mayor Justin Lester.

Both have been vocal this year in their criticism of a proposed development at Shelly Bay on the harbour edge, with Jackson entering a well-aired battle with developers and Wellington City Council.

In Auckland, John Tamihere has shaken up the contest for the Super City chains with a flurry of intriguing policy releases, including a promise to freeze rates for three years, and flashes of controversy.

Phil Goff is seeking a second term on his track record in office and a new passion for the environment. The maverick versus the manager.

TV presenter Mike McRoberts was rumoured to have earned $15,000 to MC a debate featuring the eight mayoral candidates in Hamilton, including the incumbent Andrew King and sex worker Lisa Lewis.

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At the last election, Hamilton had the lowest voter turnout of all New Zealand metropolitan centres with just over 30 per cent of eligible voters and the fourth lowest of all councils. Its turnout fell well below the national average of 42 per cent. Of the big cities, Wellington had the largest turnout of 46.2 per cent. The turnout in Auckland was 38.5 per cent.

Sir Tim Shadbolt is seeking an eighth term as Mayor of Invercargill. Photo / NZ Herald
Sir Tim Shadbolt is seeking an eighth term as Mayor of Invercargill. Photo / NZ Herald

In Dunedin, three-term Mayor Dave Cull is stepping down, and after 12 years in the city's top job, Napier Mayor Alan Dick is hanging up the mayoral chains.

It's not time, however, for the country's longest-serving mayor to hang up his boots.

Invercargill's Sir Tim Shadbolt - the former Waitemata Mayor who famously towed his concrete mixer named Karl Marx behind the mayoral Daimler in the 1983 Henderson Christmas parade - is standing for an eighth term, aged 72.