Clarence Valley councillors get down and democratic at a recent meeting.
Clarence Valley councillors get down and democratic at a recent meeting.

IT’S ON: Councillor announces mayoral tilt

COUNCILLOR Karen Toms has announced she will put her hand up for Mayor next week.

At this stage the longstanding representative on Clarence Valley Council is the only person to announce a challenge to incumbent Jim Simmons.

Cr Toms said the timing was right having retired from work meant she was free to take on the top job.

"I am putting my hat in the ring as they say and I have written to all the councillors seeking their support," she said.

"I think I have the communication skills, am inclusive and can chair a meeting well.

"I am intending to stand next year as well (if re-elected) and see it as an opportunity ... to promote the region."

Cr Simmons has already announced he will seek re-election.

Councillor Karen Toms has signalled her intentions to run for Mayor next week.
Councillor Karen Toms has signalled her intentions to run for Mayor next week.

Councillors Jason Kingsley, Andrew Baker, Debrah Novak, Richie Williamson, Arthur Lysaught, Peter Ellem and Greg Clancy have all ruled out running for Mayor.

Cr Clancy said he was considering running for the position of deputy mayor and Cr Kingsley said he would take time over the weekend to decide whether he would run for the position again.

Who should be the Clarence Valley Council Mayor in 2020/21?

This poll ended on 21 September 2020.

Current Results

Cr Andrew Baker

9%

Cr Arthur Lysaught

4%

Cr Debrah Novak

7%

Cr Greg Clancy

0%

Cr Jason Kingsley

5%

Cr Jim Simmons

22%

Cr Karen Toms

31%

Cr Peter Ellem

0%

Cr Richie Williamson

16%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

The councillors all expressed their support for Cr Simmons as Mayor, however it remains a mystery as to whether this will change now that Cr Toms has formally entered the race.

"I'll wait and see who is nominated but I would like to see status quo remain for this final year," Cr Lysaught said.

Cr Ellem said he would support Cr Simmons if he was standing.

"I think he has been a very steady hand on the tiller," he said.

Cr Andrew Baker said he had nominated Cr Simmons and had given him an undertaking that he would support him whenever he put his hand up.

"If he was to pull out then I would have to reconsider where I stood but I have no reason at all to think Jim won't be there (on Tuesday) bright-eyed and bushy-tailed with my signature on the nomination form," Cr Baker said.

Under the Local Government Act, councils who do not have popularly elected mayors are required to throw open the position every two years, and next Tuesday councillors will decide who gets the top job.

It was expected a new-look council would be voting this September, however the coronavirus pandemic postponed the elections by 12 months which meant this current group receives a bonus year in office.



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