Campaigners pushing for the demerger of Snowy Valleys Council are taking their fight into the federal arena.
The Save Tumbarumba Shire group has asked each of the 14 candidates in the upcoming Eden-Monaro to go public on whether or not they are in favour of a demerger, which would devolve Snowy Valleys back to the former separate councils of Tumut and Tumbarumba.
Despite it being largely a state issue, the Labor and Liberal candidates, along with a number from the minor parties, have so far replied.
Liberals' Fiona Kotvojs supported the Local Government Boundaries Commission's decision to consider the demerger proposal, while Labor's Kristy McBain reiterated her party's opposition to forced council mergers and supported community plebiscites.
The other candidates to respond were Matthew Stadtmiller from Shooters Fishers and Farmers, Michael Balderstone from HEMP Party, Joy Angel of Sustainable Australia, K independent Karen Porter, Cathy Griff from The Greens and Jason Potter of the Australian Federation Party.
Neil Hamilton from Save Tumbarumba Shire said that while the issue was a state one, the group had previously had support from retiring MP for Eden-Monaro Mike Kelly.
"He has been excellent at opening doors for us. It's not a federal issue, but it is one where the local candidates can play a role," Dr Hamilton said.
Despite the support of the byelection candidates, there has been little other progress on the Boundaries Commission review into the merger of both the Snowy Valleys and Cootamundra-Gundagai councils because of the coronavirus.
The review process must include public hearings, which cannot be held while restrictions on the size of public gatherings remain in place.
A spokesperson said submissions were still being accepted by the Local Government Boundaries Commission.
"At this stage the restrictions on public gatherings have not been lifted to an extent that would allow the public hearings to be held with the numbers of people expected to attend," the spokesperson said.
"The Boundaries Commission intends to hold the public hearings as soon as possible after the restrictions are lifted. A public notice will be published on the Boundaries Commission website and in local and State newspapers notifying the public of the hearing dates and locations as well as the closing date for submissions."
Voters will officially go to the polls in Eden-Monaro on Saturday.
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