THERE is speculation today that Margaret Strelow is about to declare her intention to end her political exile and run for mayor.
The last mayor of Rockhamptom City Council, who led the city for eight years, is expected to announce on Monday that she's ready to enter the fray once more.
And that will pitch her into a contest against the man she endorsed in 2008 - current mayor Brad Carter.
Ms Strelow was not contactable yesterday, but The Morning Bulletin has been assured by a number of her close friends and political confidantes, that she wants to lead the regional council.
Nominations for mayor and divisional councillors close at noon on Tuesday.
When the amalgamation of Rockhampton, Fitzroy, Mount Morgan and Livingstone councils was announced, Ms Strelow briefly ran the transitional body but decided not to seek election to the merged authority.
She poured her energies into a wide range of activities instead. These included serving on a number of statewide bodies with responsibility for heritage and library issues, and the Capricorn Coast Iconic Places Panel formed to protect Yeppoon and Emu Park from inappropriate developments.
Ms Strelow also established her family's historic Queenslander home in George St, Rockhampton as high quality bed and breakfast accommodation.
And she found herself back in the spotlight at City Hall when her proposal to run a community cafe on the edge of Rockhampton CBD was met by opposition from some of the surrounding businesses. The matter is still before the Planning and Environment Court.
Before retiring from politics, Ms Strelow was an extremely popular mayor who won a second term in the hot seat with a massive majority.
It was a surprise to many that she decided not to seek the honour of being the first leader of the amalgamated council and, in a tight race, her late support for Brad Carter was seen by many as the decisive factor in his win over ex-mayor Jim McRae. We will find out on Monday if she's running.