Here's how a completed voting form might look for a local authority election held under STV.
What it means
With STV, candidates must reach a certain number of votes - called a quota to be elected. In the example above, this voter is saying:
"The candidate I most want to represent me on the council is Sam Jones. He's my number one choice. But if he gets more votes than the quota (that is, more than he needs to be elected), then part of my vote is to be transferred to my second choice, Ngaire Smith, and maybe this will help to get her elected. On the other hand, if Sam has so little support that he can't possibly be elected, transfer my vote to Ngaire..."