The valley’s residents have elected three new councillors – Peter Ellem, Debrah Novak and Greg Clancy – and six incumbents to represent them on the new Clarence Valley Council (CVC).
When returning officer Lisa Stout pressed the button on the computer at 11am last Friday, the results in order of candidates reaching the 2971-vote quota were: Richie Williamson, Andrew Baker, Karen Toms, Peter Ellem, Jason Kingsley, Debrah Novak and Jim Simmons – Arthur Lysaught and Greg Clancy were elected without reaching a quota.
Of the former councillors who contested the election, Sue Hughes and Margaret McKenna didn’t make the cut.
The Greens’ Greg Clancy is the first person to be elected to the council as a representative of a political party.
It took 19 counts, as electors’ preferences were distributed, to reveal the nine elected councillors.
Only incumbent mayor Richie Williamson (4,966 votes) was elected on primary votes; Andrew Baker, who received 2,915 primary votes was elected after the second count.
Karen Toms was elected after 10 counts; Peter Ellem, Jason Kingsley and Debrah Novak after 14 counts; Jim Simmons after 18 counts.
Arthur Lysaught (who did not participate in the election campaign) and Greg Clancy were elected without reaching the quota, following the elimination of each of the candidates with fewer votes and the distribution of their and Jim Simmons’ preferences.
Arthur Lysaught, who was 10th on primary votes, leap-frogged Brett Tibbett and Greg Clancy after the distribution of preferences.
The preferences’ distribution also saw Peter Ellem’s position improve from eighth to being the fourth person elected; Jim Simmons dropped from sixth to seventh and Debrah Novak dropped from fourth to sixth – each of the other councillors were elected in line with their primary vote.
Of the valley’s 39,070 electors, 29,706 people (81.06 per cent) voted and there were 1,965 informal votes (6.2 per cent).
*No image of Arthur Lysaught was available at time of print.