New questions about the role of Melbourne Lord Mayor John So in appointing the city's $300,000-a-year chief executive officer, and concerns about his close relationship with the Bracks Government, have placed renewed pressure on Cr So and his uphill battle for re-election.
Confidential City of Melbourne documents seen by The Sunday Age show that when the five councillors on the council's CEO selection committee expressed their two top preferences for the position, the man who was ultimately successful, David Pitchford, came last and was supported only by Cr So.
The general theme seems to be that So was a good Mayor for the period immediately after all the factionalism and infighting brought the council to its knees, but now it is functional again more of a Go-Getter is required. The cosiness with the State Government is worrying, although So deserves credit for healing many of the previous rifts that tore the council apart.
It also seems that So has been squeezed out of the preference deals. With a Melbourne Cup field running, it will be difficult for So to get back in unless he can score a decent swag of preferences. The Age makes the point that he can expect to be comfortably ahead on primary votes but will get massacred when the preferences are distributed. Watch this space.
So is the one on the left