Ballina Mayor Phillip Silver refuses to endorse any particular candidate.
Ballina Mayor Phillip Silver refuses to endorse any particular candidate. Jay Cronan

Top job up for grabs

WHO will take Phillip Silver's spot as the mayor of Ballina Shire after the September elections?

Cr Silver won't speculate and he says he won't endorse any particular candidate.

But plenty of other people are already talking about who is going to run for the council's top job.

The mayor of Ballina Shire Council is popularly elected, meaning voters actually choose who they want as their mayor.

Two current councillors - Sharon Cadwallader and David Wright - have indicated an interest in the position.

Cr Wright, who has been the mayor before, said he was "certainly interested".

"I am still very passionate about being on the council," Cr Wright said.

"There are a lot of projects I would like to see through, but the mayoral job is a lot bigger now than what it used to be."

Cr Cadwallader said "of course" when asked if she would run for mayor.

"I have worked hard for eight years," Cr Cadwallader said.

"I reckon I'm ready.

"It would be an absolute privilege to serve my community at that level."

Councillors Robyn Hordern and Alan Brown yesterday confirmed they would not stand for the mayor's job.

Councillors Ben Smith and Jeff Johnson have not yet made a decision on the issue, although Cr Johnson said he would run for council.

Councillors Keith Johnson, Peter Moore and Sue Meehan could not be contacted yesterday.

And from outside the council, rumours circulated that Ballina Chamber of Commerce secretary Glenn Costello might put his hand up.

It is a rumour he denied.

"No, definitely not," Mr Cos-tello said.

"I would love the challenge, but I have a job that I enjoy very much and I couldn't do both.

"The chamber is very disappointed to hear that Phil will no longer be our mayor.

"We appreciate what he has done for Ballina and wish him all the best.

"We would want to see someone in the job with a range of experience who can take Ballina forward, especially in this time of change."

Louise Owen, as president of the Lennox Head Chamber of Commerce and vice-president of the Lennox Head Residents' Association, already has a high profile in the community.

She has announced that she is a candidate for C Ward, but recently told The Northern Star she would not consider the mayor's job "at this stage".

Other names being thrown in the mix include local barrister Eoin Johnston, who was named the Ballina Shire Citizen of the Year in 2009, former councillor and Lennox Head resident Alan Rich and this year's Citizen of the Year, Col Lee.

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