NATIONALS pre-selection for the seat of New England will take place today at the Tamworth Community Centre.
Current independent state member for Northern Tablelands Richard Torbay is the only candidate to have nominated for pre-selection but as part of party process will still require endorsement from the local New England Electorate Council.
During the course of the meeting Mr Torbay, as the sole candidate, will be required to address members of the council.
Chairman of the Nationals New England Federal Electorate Council Greg Kachel said members were free to use their own judgement when voting and were not directed by their branch on how to vote.
It is expected people will travel from around the region to attend the meeting.
Mr Kachel said yesterday while he wasn’t able to give a specific number, hundreds of party members who had been continually financial in the six months leading up to pre-selection were eligible and expected to vote indicating if Mr Torbay was their choice this morning.
The meeting is scheduled to begin at 11am and media talks following are scheduled for 11.45am.
“It shouldn’t run much longer than 45 minutes,” he said.
If Mr Torbay successfully gains the nomination today he will continue as the independent member for Northern Tablelands in state Parliament until the writs for the next federal election are issued.
The next federal election is due between August 3 and November 30, 2013.
Mr Torbay’s nomination, announced in June, ends speculation Nationals Senator Barnaby Joyce would contest the seat.
In the 12 months prior to Mr Torbay announcing his nomination with federal Nationals leader Warren Truss by his side, Mr Joyce, who grew up in the New England and is a graduate of the University of New England, had said on numerous occasions he was considering nominating.