Five to battle for Cabonne’s top job

RUNNING MATES: Councillors Kevin Walker, Cheryl Newsom and Anthony Durkin will run for leadership positions. Jenny Weaver (second from left) will remain a councillor.
RUNNING MATES: Councillors Kevin Walker, Cheryl Newsom and Anthony Durkin will run for leadership positions. Jenny Weaver (second from left) will remain a councillor.

COUNCILLOR-elect Kevin Beatty will add his name to the nominations for Cabonne’s mayor on Tuesday, bringing the possible number of candidates to five.

Mr Beatty, who was elected to the council with the highest number of votes on September 9, said the community had encouraged him to seek the top job. 

“It gives me the confidence to put my hand up, knowing that I’ve got the community behind me,” he said.

But he also said public support was not the be all and end all and the vote would come down to his colleagues.

A first-time councillor, Mr Beatty said it would be a quick learning experience if he was successful and he did not have his eye fixed on exact projects, but would instead follow community sentiment.

“I’d carry on the work by the last council,” he said. 

“I would be for the people and I guess I would be very community-based.”

Incumbent deputy mayor Kevin Walker said he was interested in both the mayoral and deputy mayoral positions, but he would not make a final decision until lunchtime on Tuesday, saying he needed to weigh up his private responsibilities. 

Cr Walker said he would be project focused, particularly on a levy bank at Eugowra, a retirement village for Canowindra and the pipeline to Cumnock and Yeoval.

“They’re ready to go, we just have to push them along,” he said.

The pair join councillors Anthony Durkin, Ian Davison and Greg Treavors, would have already flagged their intention to run.

Fellow incumbent Marlene Nash said she would nominate for the deputy mayor’s role after she was asked by some of her colleagues.

“Whether I actually get in or not is up to the vote, but I feel like I’ve got the experience and I want to get out and about more now I’ve retired, and definitely represent everybody,” she said. 

First-time councillor Cheryl Newsom said she was still deciding whether to run as deputy mayor.

“It depends who gets in as mayor,” she said. 

“It’s a bit of an unknown with so many new people on the council.”

Fellow councillor-elect Paul Mullins said he would not run in his first year, preferring to be a “decision enforcer”, but expected the vote to be close.

“Canowindra might feel like it’s their turn [to have a mayor] and they could be right,” he said.