Government announces State Funeral for Steve Doszpot MLA

Ian Bushnell 28 November 2017
Steve Doszpot.

Much loved community champion MLA Steve Doszpot will receive a State Funeral on Friday. Photo: Supplied.

A State Funeral will be held on Friday for Liberal MLA Steve Doszpot who died on Saturday after a battle with liver cancer.

The announcement from the Chief Minister came as ACT Electoral Commissioner Damian Cantwell said he had received notice of a vacancy in the Legislative Assembly and that Mr Doszpot’s replacement should be known by Monday 1 December.

The Legislative Assembly passed a condolence motion today paying tribute to the contribution of Mr Doszpot.

Chief Minister Andrew Barr said the State Funeral Service would be held at St Christopher’s Cathedral, Manuka, for Mr Doszpot as a mark of respect and recognition of his great contribution to the people of the ACT, both as a member of the ACT Legislative Assembly and through many community and charitable organisations.

“On behalf of Steve’s wife Maureen, his children Adam and Amy and his grandchildren Issy, Noah, Kasia, Andrew and Harry – family, friends, colleagues and community members are respectfully invited to attend,” Mr Barr said.

“I hope all those who knew and respected Steve will join me in celebrating the life of this great Canberran.”

The service will be held at 10 am.

Meanwhile, Mr Cantwell outlined the steps the Commission will take to fill the vacancy.

“On behalf of the ACT Electoral Commission I would like to express my condolences to Mr Doszpot’s family and friends for their loss,” Mr Cantwell said. “I also wish to outline the official timetable for filling the Legislative Assembly vacancy created by his passing.”

Legislative Assembly vacancies are filled by conducting a countback of those ballot papers that elected the vacating member.

Mr Cantwell said an advertisement would appear in Friday’s Canberra Times inviting candidates who unsuccessfully stood in the Kurrajong electorate at the 2016 election to contest the vacancy. “Where practicable the Commission will also notify all those unsuccessful candidates directly,” Mr Cantwell said.

Those candidates then have 10 days to indicate if they wish to contest the vacancy. Applications from candidates must be received by noon on Monday 11 December 2017.

“At 12.30 pm on 11 December 2017, the names of the candidates contesting the vacancy will be officially declared. A computer counting program will then be used to determine which candidate will be elected to the Assembly to replace Mr Doszpot,” Mr Cantwell said.

It is expected that the official declaration of the result will take place at the ACT Legislative Assembly the following Wednesday, 13 December, at 3 pm.

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