Our Yass Valley group candidates reject claims they are politicising the local government elections, despite four of them having ties to the National Party.
Candidates Councillor Geoff Frost, Mike Inkster and Nathan Reynolds-Furry are all currently members of the National Party. Kim Turner is an agricultural consultant for Nationals MP Katrina Hodgkinson. Jasmin Jones is not a member of any political party.
There was widespread community backlash the last time party politics entered the local government election campaign.
During the last election four years ago, Cr Chris McKenzie-McHarg attracted a lot of community criticism for campaigning on a Greens ticket.
But Cr Frost said despite his political affiliation, that wasn’t what the Our Yass Valley group was about.
“It’s probably irrelevant in this sense,” he said. “I would always stand as an independent.
“Even if we wanted to, the National Party doesn’t endorse candidates.”
Mr Turner said the group had nothing to do with party politics.
“I tend to lean towards the right and I work occasionally for Katrina Hodgkinson but I’m not an active member of any political party,” he said.
He believes he proved his credentials with regard to independent thinking the last time he served on council.
Mike Inkster has been a member of the National Party for 12 months, but does not feel his political persuasion will affect his decision-making as a councillor.
“If party politics made its way into our shire, it would benefit absolutely nobody,” he said.
Nathan Reynolds-Furry is a member of the National Party but he “strongly reiterates” the fact he is running as an independent.
“It’s not the politics that make the people, it’s the people that make the politics.”
Jasmin Jones is not a member of any political party but is “doggedly passionate” about mother’s issues and health.
“If you look at this group you’ll see it’s got a conservative flavour but they are also all very community-minded.
“We are all very independent, I don’t think you could get any one of us to toe a [party] line if we didn’t want to.”