A lack of local council candidates has given those with fringe views the opportunity to gain real political clout.
Anti-vaccination group Voices For Freedom has urged supporters to stand but not to declare their affiliation, making them potential shoo-ins for uncontested positions.
A number of candidates have been outed by the media as having conspiracy theorist links - but can voters really know what their wannabe-representatives stand for?
Should the media be doing more?
Journalist and educator Associate Professor Jim Tully spoke to Guyon Espiner.