RATES, rates, rates - it was an inescapable word at yesterday's forum for mayoral and divisions 1, 2, 3 and 4 candidates.
Despite the repetition and attempts to steer the topic elsewhere, the word still gained the most reaction from the vocal crowd.
Other phrases were also uttered by almost every candidate as they battled to win votes - passion, vision, teamwork.
Some candidates lost favour by parroting word-for-word the speeches they had given at previous events, while others found new angles to discuss.
Judging by a show of hands early on, almost everybody in the room had made up their minds about whose name would receive the tick on election day.
GERARD O'Connell gave several concrete suggestions for how he would improve the region, including a register listing key needs in each division to ensure each had fair representation. His message was on par with previous efforts - focused and driven.
Chris Couper was more polished than in some previous speeches, but focused more on what the previous councils had failed to do than what he would do if elected. He also described himself as a "proud LNP supporter".
Mick Kruger spoke candidly, admitting the past four years were the most challenging of his life and he believed he still had unfinished work to do.
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