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Most councillors are set to request a meeting to vote on removing Ms Hobbs from the position.
A letter signed by a majority could reach the chief executive’s desk as soon as today, the Otago Daily Times has been told.
Ms Hobbs said yesterday she would not stand aside and, though almost certain she could not head off a challenge, she wanted the public to witness her removal.
"My chances are nil," she said.
Any vote could not happen for three weeks, however.
Councillors had called for Ms Hobbs to stand down and some expressed disappointment that the transition would be needlessly prolonged.
The matter came to a head after it was revealed Ms Hobbs asked Environment Minister David Parker if he might bring in a commissioner if she lost a key vote.
A clash with Federated Farmers is another prominent factor.
The ODT understands a comfortable majority wants a change of chairmanship at the council.
Cr Hilary Calvert said Ms Hobbs’ determination to carry on could make the council dysfunctional for three weeks.
"We need to be getting on with things," she said.
In March, seven councillors called for a 12-month re-evaluation of the council’s policy and finances, including the withdrawal and suspension of plan changes in progress and a review of its Regional Policy Statement.
The March 26 letter to Ms Hobbs was signed by Crs Calvert, Michael Laws, Carmen Hope, Gary Kelliher, Kevin Malcolm, Andrew Noone and Kate Wilson.
Several councillors said yesterday they did not believe full advantage was being taken of the experience and competence available at the table.
Cr Kelliher said he did not have confidence in Ms Hobbs.
Asked if she had confidence in Ms Hobbs, Cr Wilson said there were "issues that need to be addressed on that count".
"We need change in the way we are currently being led," Cr Malcolm said.
"The majority of councillors feel something needs to happen," Cr Noone said.
Crs Bryan Scott and Alexa Forbes said they did have confidence in her.
"Our region, along with others is facing significant environmental challenges and she understands that — she is endeavouring to work with the community, the region and central government," Cr Scott said.
"There have been some mistakes on all sides."
Cr Forbes said she was sad and disappointed.
"Frankly, we don’t have the numbers to keep her there."
Ms Hobbs, a former minister for the environment, said she thought councillors did not appreciate her "New Zealand-wide perspective" about progress.
"I want Otago to catch up."
Cr Laws, the deputy chairman, said he wanted speculation to end as quickly as possible.
Otago councillors were as talented as any he had worked with.
Cr Michael Deaker said the organisation was functioning well but councillors had to get their act together.
"My concern is that the council is effective."