Information Sharing

Annual Report

Purpose: To identify, from immigration records, those on the electoral roll who appear not to meet New Zealand residence requirements, so their names may be removed from the roll.

Year commenced: 1996

Features: Data transferred online daily.

INZ disclosure to EC: Immigration New Zealand provides full names (including aliases), date of birth, address and permit expiry date. The type of permit can be identified because five separate files are received, each relating to a different permit type.

2012/13 activity:

Records received for matching (as at 30 June 2012) 215,881
Possible matches identified 728
Notice of adverse action sent[1] 728
Challenge received 17
Successful challenges 16
Cost $3,030.45

Commentary: An audit on the operation of this programme found that there are effective controls in place and no issues were identified.

Compliance: Compliant.

Technical information

Information matching provision Electoral Act 1993, s.263A
Year authorised/commenced 1995/1996
Programme type Confirming eligibility
Detecting illegal behaviour

System description
The Electoral Commission uses the Electoral Enrolment Centre (EEC) to process this match. Immigration New Zealand (INZ) sends the EEC daily files containing the names (including aliases), date of birth, address and permit expiry date of all people known to be in New Zealand on the basis of limited duration residence permits or visas, or who are believed to be overstayers. EEC matches applications for enrolment against this information and, if a match is found, contacts the applicant by phone where possible to discuss their eligibility. A letter is still sent to confirm the conclusion reached during the phone call.

Historical activity

Daily matching (from 14 February 2010)

  2009/10* 2010/11 2011/12 
Records received for matching 353,079 211,672 207,766
Possible matches identified 338 1,618 1,502
Notices of adverse action sent 338 1,618 1,202
Challenge received 17 64 54
Successful challenges 17 56 45
Removals from roll 312 1,562 1,457
Cost $9,745 $47,242.66 $13,856
Average cost per removal $31.23 $30.25 $9.51


Batch matching (prior to 14 February 2010)

  2005/06 2006/07 2007/08 2008/09 2009/10*
Records received for matching 243,869 205,427 204,043 836,161 436,975
Possible matches identified 2,325 3,207 1,200 4,217 587
Response received with evidence to remain
on electoral roll
32 112 28 434 6
Total of all removals 2,293 3,095 1,172 3,694 581
Total cost $115,156 $171,984 $71,907 $167,557 $21,308
Average cost of removal $50 $55 $61 $45.36 $36.68


* covering 3 June 2009 to 13 February 2010.

This match was not run in 2002/03 or 2003/04 as no election (national or local) was scheduled and the match was only run immediately in advance of an election.

In 2008/09 EEC increased the frequency with which they obtained the data from INZ to keep the roll as correct as practicable. Previously they obtained the data once per year. During 2008/09 extracts were obtained in July, then on a weekly basis between 15 September and 14 November 2008, and lastly in June 2009.

Until 2008/09 EEC checked each matched record with INZ to confirm the match. This check is seen to be no longer as useful as it was. Ceasing to conduct this check during 2008/09 has reduced the cost and administrative overhead of the programme.

In 2009/10 EEC requested approval to receive daily copies of the file via an on-line transfer system. An approval for a one year period has been granted. Toward the end of that period the system will be audited and EEC may request a further approval.

In August 2011 the legislation was amended to allow the match to take place before people are added to the roll (previously the check could only occur after the person had been added to the roll).

INZ was previously known as New Zealand Immigration Service (NZIS).