Today is election day and by mid-afternoon Rotorua should know who its mayor and council will be for the next three years.

But, with seven mayoral candidates and 35 council candidates, there could be some close calls and some candidates may have to wait a few days before the final count is made.

Progress results will also be released for the Bay of Plenty Regional Council and Lakes District Health Board today with voter numbers looking like they could be slightly higher than in the previous three elections.

As at 7.20pm Thursday night, 18,294 of the district's 46,215 eligible voters, or 39.58 per cent, had had their say with voting closing at midday today.


In the 2013 election 43.79 per cent of eligible voters voted, in 2010 it was 43.41 per cent and in 2007 it was 44 per cent.

The Rotorua Lakes Council will consist of a mayor and 10 councillors - a reduction of two councillors following a representation review - a four member Lakes Community Board and a four member Rural Community Board.

The Rural Community Board did not require an election with four people being nominated for the four positions - Bob Martin, Shirley Trumper, Euan McLachlan and Chris Sutton.

Two people will be elected to represent Rotorua on the Bay of Plenty Regional Council and one person will represent Rotorua Maori in the regional council's Okurei Maori constituency.

Seven out of 26 candidates will be elected to sit on the Lakes District Health Board.

After final results are released on Thursday night, it won't be long until the new councils and boards get to work.

On Thursday, October 20 an induction process starts for new council and community board members and includes a series of workshops covering major projects and work programmes, meeting procedures and processes.

It will also include bus tours to key council-operated sites.

On Tuesday, October 25 the new mayor, councillors and community board members will be officially sworn in and the following day the new council will meet for the first time when it is expected to sign off on the council's 2015/16 annual report.

- Voting closes at midday today
- Progress results available from about 2pm today
- Preliminary available results from about 4pm tomorrow
- Final results available from about 8pm Thursday
- New council and community board members officially take office on Thursday, October 20
- Swearing in of mayor, councillors, rural community board members and lakes community board members on Tuesday, October 25
- First official council meeting on Wednesday, October 26