Asher takes leave from mayoralty for election
THE decks are being cleared for this year’s indeterminate federal election, with Liberal candidate for Corangamite Stephanie Asher now on leave from being a City of Greater Geelong mayor and councillor.
Ms Asher, who was elected to the council in 2017 and became mayor in 2019, was preselected in July 2021 to run in the seat against Labor incumbent Libby Coker.
She announced last week that her leave of absence began on January 15.
“Being mayor of Greater Geelong is an immense honour and privilege but with the federal election now just around the corner, the time is right to step aside from the role,” she said.
“I am very proud of my record as Mayor and serving our local community, particularly infrastructure items supporting our lifestyle, which include endorsing construction of the 50-metre pool in Drysdale and advocating for the second stage indoor complex, as well as the Shared Trails Masterplan, supported by a $5.35 million investment into paths and township connections.
“Our enterprise-wide sustainability plan and detailed climate change response plan, including net-zero for the community by 2035 was also a key achievement.
“From the outset, I committed to taking a leave of absence early this year, which will allow me to focus entirely on campaigning for the federal seat of Corangamite.”
Ms Asher said that she was energised by the opportunity to build on her achievements as mayor and take them to the next level.
“I feel energised by the prospect of the federal election and potentially representing our local community as your federal
“As your Liberal for Corangamite, I’ll be working 24/7 for things like better local infrastructure and services to manage our regional growth, and of course a strong local economy to help provide security and certainty for local families and retirees.”
Ms Asher said she had written to the city’s chief executive officer Martin Cutter regarding her intentions as well as formally advising the council group, and she had also been in close contact with deputy mayor Trent Sullivan about him assuming the mayoral duties for the duration.
Other declared candidates vying to win Corangamite at this year’s poll include investment banker and land economist Tom Roe as an independent, Surf Coast Shire councillor Paul Barker for the Liberal Democrats, and disability support worker and Bachelor of Commerce student Alex Marshall for the Greens.
A date has not yet been set for the 2022 federal election, but it must be held before May 21.