Tight lips from those considering mayoral role

Who will reign over Dubbo Regional Council? Photo: BELINDA SOOLE
Who will reign over Dubbo Regional Council? Photo: BELINDA SOOLE

Counting in the Dubbo Regional Council election is still underway but the future councillors are already looking towards the top job.

Only one person has currently said they will stand for the role – former councillor Kevin Parker.

However the role has not been ruled out by Jane Diffey, John Ryan and Greg Mohr.

Former deputy mayor Ben Shields refused to comment on the matter. He also did not wish to say what he believed made a good mayor.

Dayne Gumley, Stephen Lawrence and David Grant have all said they will not be running for mayor. Meanwhile Vicki Etheridge ruled it out this year, but said she would be standing for mayor in the not-to-distant future.

Mr Mohr said he believed someone with previous council experience was needed to be mayor.

“It’s not something that should be taken lightly. You are the voice of 55,000 people,” he said.

It was a job that needed 100 per cent, full-time commitment, Mr Mohr said, and he would have to consider if he could give it.

With a young family at home Ms Diffey said she would need to give more thought to the role.

Ms Diffey said she believed the mayor should be someone who was honest, who had a sense of propriety and common sense.

Mr Ryan also said it was something that he would need to give more thought.

Having not sat on council before he said it would be a big call to take on the lead role.

While she has had experience on Warren council, Ms Etheridge said she was not going to stand this time.

“You can’t just walk into a mayoral position,” she said.

However, Ms Etheridge said she would certainly be putting her hand up when the time was right.

Dubbo needed a strong and dynamic mayor, she said, who knew the Local Government Act like the back of their hand.

Mr Gumley cited a lack of experience for his reason for not standing. Mr Lawrence said he wanted to focus on keeping his promises to the people. Mr Grant said he didn’t have the time and he believed the mayor should be someone from Dubbo.

The mayor is decided with a vote from the councillors. The person with the most votes is given the title. If there is a tie, a name is pulled out of a hat.

An extraordinary meeting of council will be held in the coming weeks for the vote, most likely on September 28.