The electoral district of Murray is a located in South-western NSW. Murray borders Victoria and South Australia, and includes the towns of Griffith, Leeton, Deniliquin and Wentworth. It covers the entirety of Wentworth, Balranald, Hay, Carrathool, Griffith, Leeton, Edward River, Murray River and Berrigan local government areas, and parts of the Murrumbidgee council area.
According to 2016 Census data, Murray has:
A population of 82,908 (46,398 voters turned out in 2015 out of 55,087 enrolled);
A higher than average median age at 42;
A lower than average level of highest educational attainment with 9.7% of constituents achieving a Bachelor Degree level and above; and
A lower than average median weekly household income of $1,154 (vs. $1,486 for NSW).
Murray has first existed from 1859 to 1999. In 1999 the seat was renamed Murray-Darling after expanding to cover Broken Hill. In 2015 the seat was restored to Murray, after Broken Hill was transferred out of the seat. Murray also took in parts of the abolished seat of Murrumbidgee.
Murray had been dominated by the Country/National Party since 1932, when it had been won by Joe Lawson. Lawson lost Country Party preselection 35 years later in 1967, and was re-elected as an independent in 1968. He held the seat as an independent until his death in 1973. Following Lawson’s death, his daughter Mary Meillon won the by-election as a Liberal . Mellion held the seat until her death in 1980. Since 1980s the seat of Murray has been a mixture of ALP and Nationals.
Murrumbidgee was dominated by the ALP in the middle part of the last century but has been held by the National Party since 1984.
The current member, Austin Evans, holds the seat for the Nationals.
Austin Evans (NAT)
Evans is the National Party candidate for Murray in the 2019 election, and the current member. Evans won the seat in a by-election in 2017 when local member and former Baird Government Education Minister Adrian Piccoli retired half way through his term.
Before entering Parliament Evans worked with Coleambally Irrigation, providing Evans with an excellent understanding of irrigation and water management issues. Evans’ background also includes positions with Kondinin Group, managing tillage equipment projects for the GRDC; SunWater, managing projects throughout the Queensland’s irrigation regions; as well as running his own small business.
Helen Dalton (SFF)
Dalton is the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers candidate for Murray in the 2019 election.
Dalton ran for Murray in the 2015 election, winning 18 per cent of the vote as an independent. She subsequently ran against Nationals' candidate Austin Evans in the 2017 Murray by-election and reduced the Nationals' hold on the seat from a 22.7 point margin to a 3.3 point margin.
Dalton is a framer from Griffith.