Mornington Peninsula Shire councillors elect a new mayor early in November and lobbying for votes is already reportedly underway.
The prestigious $100,000 plus position comes with a car – the mayor mobile, an electric BMW hatch – as well as the demands of representing the shire in different forums and publicly.
While councillors usually keep their intentions inside the tent, that does not mean that other “insiders” cannot speculate.
Council officers are running a book on the likelihood of who will be the next mayor and who will be that person’s deputy.
Betting odds late last week show the smart money is on what is a three-horse mayoral race led by Cr Sarah Race (now deputy mayor), followed by current mayor Cr Despi O’Connor and Cr Anthony Marsh.
Councillors not represented in the early betting for either mayor or deputy are Antonella Celi, Steve Holland, David Gill, Kerri McCafferty, Susan Bissinger and Debra Mar.
Betting odds last week saw the current deputy Cr Race as being the 2:1 favourite with Cr Lisa Dixon as deputy.
The current mayor, Cr O’Connor, is sitting at 4:1, retaining the status quo with Cr Race continuing as her deputy.
The next most highly-fancied combination, at 5:1, is Cr Marsh being elected mayor with Cr Paul Mercurio as deputy.
Slightly further down the field at 6:1, in a reversal of their current positions, is Cr Race as mayor with Cr O’Connor as her deputy.
Other combinations are Cr Race as mayor with Cr Marsh deputy, 7:1; Cr O’Connor mayor and Cr Marsh deputy, 8:1; and Cr Marsh as mayor with Cr Race deputy, 10:1.
Trailing the field is the 20:1 combination of Cr Race in the top job and Cr Marsh as her deputy.