ABOVE: Before the storm, Richmond Valley candidates Steve Morrissey, Trudy Lamont and Patrick Deegan outside the Casino Community Centre. Photo: Susanna Freymark
Less than half an hour before voting closed at 6pm today, a dark sky growled and broke its clouds to unleash a wild and fast storm with sideways rain.
For the last ten minutes of voting, candidates hid at the side door of the Casino Community Centre.
A few late voters rushed by to cast their vote.
Election signs fell over in the wind and were hastily picked up and lumped into some shrubs to stop them skittling down the street.
The storm relieved the air pressure. And as if a metaphor for weeks of campaigning, it was a relief to the candidates too.
Both Richmond Valley and Kyogle LGAs had their moments when campaigning between candidates became terse and at times personal.
That is over now.
As the election results came in there was further relief.
Kyogle’s mayor Danielle Mulholland is back in as councillor. Her mayoral position will be decided by Kyogle councillors when all are announced.
Richmond Valley mayor Robert Mustow is waiting to hear if he is in for another term. It is more than likely but hasn’t been confirmed yet.
The top three candidates should be known tonight or tomorrow but others will have to wait. Preferences, postal and iVotes will be collated and counted by December 21, the NSW Electoral Commission said.
We’ll update this information as more candidates are announced.