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Cr John McNamara will retire after the October 2021 election

Long serving Swan councillor retires

By Claire Ottaviano

AFTER serving on Swan council for the past two and a half decades, John McNamara is retiring at the end of this term to spend more time with his family.

Cr McNamara has retained his seat in the Whiteman ward since first elected in 1997.

The long-time Ballajura resident said while his time on council had its ups and downs, it was now the natural time for him to pass the torch.

“It varies from good to bad to indifferent and exciting,” he said.

“There’s a lot of different scenarios you can talk about but I’m in my 25th year at the moment and it’s time for me to leave it for someone with a little more energy.”

He first ran for council in 1994 but was unsuccessful, though returned at the next election where he secured his place.

“[Retiring], is certainly on my terms but it’s not easy to go,” he said.

“A lot of members of the community that I’ve been working for, they feel let down in a sense of ‘why are you leaving now’.

“And it’s very hard to answer that, I’m 76 years of age, I have a business to run and it’s time to get back to my wife and family.”

Cr McNamara said while his bigger achievements, such as the reopening of the Ballajura Police Station and his support of the controversial Paradise Quays aged care centre, were important, he was most fond of the smaller items.

“A gentleman came to me once and said he needed help getting approval to build a patio, now that’s a very small item but it can be very big in the sense about how to go about it,” he said.

“It might be little in the big picture but it’s a big thing to an individual.

“Local government should be local, it should be dealing with local issues and local concerns and a lot of people don’t know where to start when it comes to planning law.

“[Being on council] has been very, very good to me personally and also psychologically as well to be able to help people in that way.”

Retirement does not mean slowing down for the 76 year old who is busy running a pharmaceutical business in Malaga.

“Everyone has their own agendas in life and at the end of the day, if you’re happy to get out of bed and happy to go to work that’s excellent,” he said.

“I want to say thank you to the people from Ballajura who have supported me for the past 29 years I am sorry to go but it is my time to leave.”

Next week Echo News will feature retiring councillor Claire Scanlan.

Don’t miss the 2021 Local Government election candidate profiles in Echo News on October 8.

About The Editorial Team

Echo News gives readers an alternative to other media outlets in WA and enjoys a very high rate of readership in its distribution area. Our Echo News team are a small group of devoted individuals who work hard to give the local community an easy to read, yet intelligent mix of local community stories.

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