Nominations are now finalised for the upcoming Mitchell Shire Council election, with eight new faces to stand as a candidate and eight councillors to recontest.
The Victorian Electoral Commission received 16 nominations to fill nine councillor positions across three wards.
The election will take place by mail by October 24.
The south ward is set to be the most competitive despite its reduced area after the ward boundaries were redrawn, with seven candidates to fill its three positions.
The south ward includes Wallan and Beveridge, but Wallan East, including Wallara Waters and Newbridge estate residents are now in the central ward.
All three sitting councillors of the south ward – Bob Cornish, David Lowe, and Rob Eldridge – will recontest. They are joined by Bikram Singh, Visalia Govender, Christine Banks and Neal Langborne.
The central ward, which includes Wallan East, Wandong, Heathcote Junction, Clonbinane, Kilmore East, Kilmore, Willomavin and High Camp, is the only ward guaranteed to have a fresh face.
Five candidates are standing in central ward – Annie Goble and Bob Humm will attempt to retain their positions, with competition from new candidates Louise Bannister, Jasdeep Kochar and Nathan Clark.
Outgoing councillor and deputy mayor David Atkinson chose not to stand again.
The north ward, which now includes Broadford, will be contested by four candidates, including the three sitting councillors.
Carol Tullett is the only new candidate in the north ward, with Rhonda Sanderson, Bill Chisholm and Fiona Stevens recontesting.
The Victorian Electoral Commission will mail ballot packs to enrolled voters from October 6 to 8, containing a ballot paper attached to statements and photos from candidates, a ballot paper envelope, voting instructions, and a reply-paid envelope.
For a vote to count, it must be in the mail or hand-delivered to Mitchell Shire’s election office at the former Killara Children’s Centre at 42/80 Bentinck Street, Wallan before 6pm on Friday, October 23.
Election offices operate from 9am to 5pm on weekdays until Wednesday, October 21, until 8pm on Thursday, October 22 and until 6pm on Friday, October 23.
Results will be declared on Friday, November 13.
Mitchell Shire residents will be able to have a ballot pack sent to a different address if they will be away when ballot packs are mailed or if their mailing address has changed since rolls closed on August 28.
Mitchell Shire’s nine candidates are among more than 2000 across the state to fill 622 positions in 298 separate elections.
For more on Mitchell Shire candidates, see next week’s Review.