An Orange City Council election candidate says she is concerned delaying the polls by three months could give sitting councillors an advantage over other people standing.
Lesley Smith has nominated to stand for both mayor and as a councillor in the polls which have been pushed back from next month to December 4 due to COVID-19 lockdowns.
Ms Smith said she was concerned the longer lead-up to the polls could create election fatigue and potentially favour current councillors who were standing for re-election.
"The date set for less than three weeks before Christmas may result in an expedient vote," she said.
"It would be another pandemic casualty if the community ground swell of enthusiasm for real change and ensuring as a community we are heading towards a region with a balanced approach to economic and environmental factors and progressive change was lost."
Another candidate Melanie McDonell said she initially "wasn't too happy" with the short notice of the delay called by the state government.
She said it would be "really disappointing" if it stopped momentum for change.
"It's been the same old mob for so long," she said.
Ms McDonell said her team had "pressed pause" on a letterbox drop of their pamphlets but were now concentrating on continuing their campaign.
"We're planning on keeping up the momentum," she said.
Another candidate Frances Kinghorne said it was up to the new candidates to use the extra time to their advantage.
She said existing councillors had the benefit of public profiles.
"People do tend to vote for names they know," she said.
Ms Kinghorne said the Orange Residents and Ratepayers Association ticket, on which she is number two, had started putting their campaign pamphlets in letter boxes.
"It's about maintaining the [public] awareness of us," she said.
"I don't think it [the delay] is that bad."
Greens party candidate David Mallard said the longer lead-in would help their campaign.
"The extra time means we've got more opportunities to talk to the voters about what matters to them," he said.
"I really see it as a chance to be campaigning and connecting."
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