Citizens & Ratepayers are not contesting the Waitemata and Gulf seat on the Super City council in a bid to stop left-leaning Auckland Regional Council chairman Mike Lee winning the flagship ward.

The ticket has decided to endorse independent candidate Alex Swney to avoid splitting the right-leaning vote three ways among a C&R candidate, Mr Swney and businessman Tenby Powell, another independent candidate for the single-member ward.

C&R selected Auckland Chamber of Commerce chief executive Michael Barnett to stand in the ward, but has not replaced him since he withdrew in May, after developing throat cancer.

C&R president John Slater yesterday said Mr Swney would be expected to be part of C&R on the Auckland Council and attend team meetings.

The Heart of the City chief executive was coy about his loyalty towards C&R, saying the Super City was a new, MMP-style landscape.

He said he would back "good ideas" without being tainted by politics. That included good ideas from the main mayoral candidates, including the left-leaning Len Brown, he said.

Mr Powell, who acknowledged C&R had been playing him off with Mr Swney, said he had consistently said "no" to the ticket.

"Sadly, Alex Swney's last-minute deal with the C&R ticket reeks of political desperation," Mr Powell said.

Mr Slater said C&R was going into the elections without a leader.

"This is a new era, a new city and we believe that rather than choose a leader at this stage we will get the elections over and they will elect a leader."

He announced two further candidates for the Auckland Council - former North Shore Mayor George Wood, who will contest one of two seats in the North Shore ward; and five-term Manukau City councillor Bob Wichman, who will contest one of two seats on the Manukau ward.

Last month, Mr Wood announced he was standing as an independent, saying "a council should act on behalf of the people, not to satisfy lobbyists and special interest groups".

C&R has struggled to get a full ticket for the Auckland Council. With two days until nominations close on Friday, it has 15 candidates for the 20 seats, including Mr Swney.

Families Commissioner and Auckland Regional councillor Christine Rankin has cut her ties with C&R to stand on the new North Now ticket in the North Shore ward.

A Herald-DigiPoll survey found 36.3 per cent of Aucklanders believe C&R, which has controlled the Auckland City Council for many years, should control the new Auckland Council. A total of 39.9 per cent of respondents said C&R should not control it and 23.7 per cent did not know or refused to answer.

The poll found 54.8 per cent had heard of C&R and 43.7 per cent had not.