Councillor Rodney Degens.
Councillor Rodney Degens. Bruce Thomas

Degens to run for Mayor

COUNCILLOR Rodney Degens has put his hand up to run for mayor and he's come out fighting.

Announcing his intention to run, Cr Degens took a swipe at the city council's current leadership team.

"I have been in council for the last four years and it is apparent that a number of councillors and particularly the current council, under the present leadership, have not been listening to the wider community," Cr Degens said.

He said he considered the mayor's role as a service to the community, which should not be taken for granted nor used for personal influence.

"A real leader listens, processes and acts in the interests of everyone. Coffs Harbour has been lacking this attention for years and I plan to return the office of mayor back to where it should be."

Three other candidates have told the Advocate they will be running for mayor when the local government election is held on September 8.

While the size of the field is sure to grow before final nominations close next week, so far the Mayor, Cr Keith Rhoades, his deputy Cr Denise Knight and The Greens Dr Sally Townley will go head-to-head with Cr Degens for the top job.

Dr Townley has a team of three Greens candidates behind her who will run for positions on the new council.

The team comprises Cr Mark Graham, Craig Christie and Aina Ranke.

Coffs Harbour identity and historian Nan Cowling is also running for the council while Cr Kerry Hines has confirmed she is seeking re-election.

Cr Hines has just completed her first term as a councillor and believes the experience she's gained over the past four years will hold her in good stead.

"I have learned a lot in this term and I relish the opportunity of representing the community into the future," Cr Hines said.

"I believe it's important to engage in the direction our city is heading."

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