YARRA Ranges Council is in for a facelift after two councillors lost their seats in Saturday's council election.
Former Billanook ward councillor Tim Heenan and Chirnside ward councillor Richard Higgins were out of the race by late yesterday afternoon. Maria McCarthy is set to become the new Billanook councillor, with 57.18 per cent of the vote after preferences were distributed.
Mr Heenan had 42.82 per cent after preferences. Before distribution, he had led the field of 10 candidates with 23 per cent of the primary vote.
It was a two-horse race in Chirnside ward, with new councillor Andy Witlox taking out 55.87 per cent of the votes, while Mr Higgins received 44.13 per cent.
Mr Witlox and Ms McCarthy will be among five new faces on the council after three sitting councillors — Graham Warren (Chandler ward), Jeanette McRae (Ryrie) and Chris Templer (O'Shannassy) decided not to recontest.
It proved a close contest in Chandler, where Jason Callanan appears to have just staved off John Nieman with 50.70 per cent to 49.30 per cent.
The numbers are just as tight in Walling ward — sitting councillor of 30 years Len Cox polled 50.93 per cent of the votes to Lisa di Battista's 49.07 per cent.
Ryrie ward will have Fiona McAllister as its new representative, easily leading on preferences with 62 per cent of the vote.
Former councillor and mayor Jim Child will return to O'Shannassy ward, taking 56.95 per cent of primary votes. Existing councillors Samantha Dunn (Lyster ward), Terry Avery (Melba) and Noel Cliff (Streeton) were all easily returned.
What do you think? Post a comment below.
For more election coverage and to hear from new councillors, stay with this websie throughout the week.