IN A double-backflip worthy of an Olympian, two Griffith councillors have changed their minds about contesting the mayoral ballot next month.
Second-term councillor Simon Croce and previous mayoral candidate Anne Napoli will make a run for the top job despite telling The Area News just weeks ago they would only seek election as councillors.
Both had reconsidered their nominations at the last minute and decided they had something more to offer the city.
Cr Napoli regarded her nomination as a show of support for incumbent mayor Mike Neville, rather than an opportunity to oppose him.
She said Cr Neville had asked her to run in case the vote came down to a distribution of preferences.
"I have long supported Mike and the work he has done for this community and I want to see the strong leadership that he has displayed continue into the next term of council," Cr Napoli said. "While I am sure that the community will agree that Mike is the best person for the role of mayor, if my preferences can ensure that he is still in the role after September 8 then I am more than happy to be part of his team."
The Yoogali resident will also run on the mayor's ticket. While Cr Napoli saw the election as an opportunity to support a man she previously said she would never challenge as mayor, Cr Croce had simply re-evaluated his ability to lead the city.
"No one has the god-given right to the position of mayor it's open to anyone who wants to nominate, anyone who thinks they have something to offer," Cr Croce said. "You don't need a university degree in political science, you just have to be willing to listen to the community and your fellow councillors and act on their needs. Being the mayor and on council is not about doing anything fancy, it's just doing the basics well and all of the other things will follow."
This will be the second time the mayor will be chosen by the people.
for the second time at this election after a 2004 referendum determined the community preferred to select its own leader.
Cr Neville earned 45 per cent of the primary vote in 2008 to become the city's first popularly elected mayor.