Morris yet to declare upper house intentions

CITY of Ballarat mayor Josh Morris may still contest the vacant Liberal Party’s Western Victoria position after it was announced nominations for the seat would open on Saturday.

Premier Denis Napthine with City of Ballarat mayor Joshua Morris. File image

Premier Denis Napthine with City of Ballarat mayor Joshua Morris. File image

Members of the Liberal Administration Committee met on Thursday to chose eight new candidates for the November state election and agreed to reopen entries for Western Victoria after Young Liberal president Aaron Lane stood down after using Twitter to attack homosexuals, and was caught referring to former Labor leader Simon Crean as a “big C” and former speaker Peter Slipper as “a giant C”.

Rumour started circulating on Tuesday that Cr Morris may attempt to contest the position, which is almost a guarantee to  being elected in the Victorian upper house. 

But when he was questioned by The Courier, Cr Morris would only say that it was “inappropriate” to comment at the time.

Cr Morris is a member of the administrative committee which includes Premier Denis Napthine and state president Tony Snell.

City of Ballarat chief executive Anthony Schinck failed to weigh in on what the impact of Cr Morris potential nomination for state parliament could mean for the council. 

The vacant position is second on the ballot, only behind Ballarat MP Simon Ramsay, with another City of Ballarat councillor, Samantha Macintosh, also expected to contest the open spot. 

Nominations for the position will open on Saturday and close at midday on Friday, August 22.

matthew.dixon@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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