Two of Orange’s councillors have rebuffed rumours they had been disendorsed by Country Labor, saying the branch never ran an endorsed ticket.
Orange’s Country Labor branch recently agreed not to endorse a ticket for the Orange City Council elections on September 9, in line with previous decisions.
However the Orange Residents and Ratepayers Association informed the Central Western Daily it had become aware sitting councillors Jeff Whitton and Glenn Taylor had not been endorsed by the branch.
Cr Taylor said the claims were “totally salacious” and he had only run on an endorsed ticket once, the year the group ticket system was introduced, but had run independently ever since.
“It didn’t make a difference to our vote anyway,” he said.
“I’m happy to stand on my record – you can’t make a decision on a community level based on political beliefs, it just doesn’t work.”
Cr Whitton agreed his party membership did not influence his decisions on the council.
“It’s not a concern for me personally if the Labor Party ran an endorsed ticket or not because I wouldn’t be seeking to run on it anyway,” he said.
Neither have launched a ticket yet.
Branch president Brock Skelton said individuals who stood would have the branch’s support, but they would not be formally endorsed.
“Politics doesn’t belong on council,” he said.
“There are a number of party members that are running, that’s because they are dedicated citizens that believe the community can be improved and they’re doing that as individuals.”