TWENTY one hopefuls have thrown their hats into the ring for the seven seats in the Melville council elections.
Incumbents Cameron Schuster, Nicole Foxton, June Barton, Clive Robartson, Patricia Phelan and Deputy Mayor Rebecca Aubrey are all seeking re-election but face competition from an array of new – and returning – faces.
With two seats vacant following former councillor Lisa O’Malley’s election to State Government in March, the Palmyra-Melville-Willagee ward has attracted the highest number of candidates with six.
Experience is on the side of Cr Phelan, who has served 19 years on council over two terms, but she is not the only ward candidate with previous exposure to local government. Past councillor Peter Best has re-nominated for a seat.
Self-employed transport industry worker Scott Phillip, Fremantle Netball Association executive Karen Wheatland, public servant Alan Fairhead and long-time Melville Disability Advisory Committee member and local volunteer Adam Hewber are the other ward candidates.
Cr Schuster’s bid for re-election in the Applecross-Mt Pleasant ward comes against business consultant Steve Kepert, an independent candidate for the seat of Bicton the 2017 State Election, Rotarian Souzi Clifford and 25-year-old eco-tourism graduate Felix Rosario.
Bateman-Kardinya-Murdoch also has four candidates, Cr Foxton hoping to see off a challenge from IT professional Matt Bruyninckx, mining sector veteran Derek Ammon and nurse turned delivery business owner Tony Stokes.
Past mayor Katy Mair is gunning for the Central ward seat of Cr Aubrey, with former City of Melville community development officer Callum Prior also putting up his hand.
The final two seats have just two candidates each – long-time councillor and former Mayor June Barton taking on high school administrator John Watters in the Bicton-Attadale-Alfred Cove ward and fellow council veteran Cr Robartson defending his Bull Creek-Leeming seat from former miner Marie Curtis.
Six of the 21 candidates are members of political parties, while a further three declined to disclose their membership status.
The Tompkins Park wave park looms as a major potential election issue, with many candidates voicing either support or opposition for the project.
For full candidate profiles, visit communitynews.com.au/perthvotes and look out for our ward-by-ward coverage.