Christopher Cole successful Mount Alexander Shire countback candidate in Castlemaine Ward, has until Wednesday to accept

Christopher Cole. Image: Mount Alexander Shire

Christopher Cole. Image: Mount Alexander Shire

Christopher Cole was again the successful candidate in a countback for the Castlemaine Ward in the Mount Alexander Shire Council.  

The countback was held on Monday following the resignation of Robin Taylor, who became the third councillor to quit in four months in February.

Mr Taylor cited the council code of conduct, lack of money spent on capital works and high staff numbers among the reasons for his departure. 

Mr Cole previously declined the role after being a successful candidate in a countback to fill the position of departing councillor Tony Bell, who quit in October following a fractious same-sex marriage debate.

He has until 2.00pm on Wednesday to accept the role and if he decides not to, a further countback will be held for the remaining eligible candidates, the Victorian Electoral Commission confirmed.

Speaking to the Bendigo Advertiser in November, Mr Cole said his work and family situation had changed, and declining the role was the best thing for him.

“I would have loved to join council and hopefully the situation arises in the future when I am in a better position,” he said at the time.

Mr Cole, who has previously served four years on council, was contacted for comment on Tuesday. 

If Mr Cole declines the role, the remaining candidates from the October 2016 local government election will be considered.

Those candidates include Susan Mayfair (five per cent), Jay Smith (eight per cent) and Max Lesser (four per cent), who struggled with first preference votes in the 2016 election. 

Stephen Gardner was appointed new councillor in the Tarrengower Ward last month following the resignation of former Mount Alexander Shire mayor, Sharon Telford. 

Cr Gardner was one of three candidates standing for position.

“Thanks to the support of my wife, Kylie, and my father-in-law, Stuart, who did a great job of spruiking me to everyone in the street,” Cr Gardner said recently.

“I’m looking forward to filling the vacancy and working with everyone in the community and at council.”