Push for a changing of the guard

Six months out from the October local government elections, first term councillor Brian Oliver (28) and long-standing mayor Trevor Vaughan (60) have each told the Gazette they will contest the high profile position.

The Gazette asked all elected members to outline their intentions for the coming poll.

Of the nine elected members, four responded � with their terms expiring in October, Vicki Potter, Vin Nairn and Mr Vaughan said they would recontest, with the latter the only one vying for mayor.

With their terms also expiring in October, deputy Mayor Claire Anderson and John Bissett did not respond, and neither did first term councillor Vince Maxwell or stalwart Keith Hayes.

First term Banksia ward councillor Mark Windram ruled out running for mayor, saying he was �quite happy doing what I’m doing at the moment�.

With the role of councillor no longer the bastion of the over-50s in metropolitan Perth, Cr Oliver � the Town�s youngest councillor � said age and experience would be just one of many aspects people would consider when they voted on the position of mayor.

But he did say Victoria Park needed a council �that will move on from the old ways of looking inwards and backwards�.

�This will take fresh perspectives and fresh leadership,� the ECU Bachelor of Communications journalism major said, highlighting his recent introduction of a review of how the Town engages and consults with the community.

�The community understands that the measurement for suitability for someone to be an elected member, whether councillor or mayor, is whether they understand the values and aspirations of the community,� he said.

Mr Vaughan, who was elected mayor in 2007, hopes to complete one more term to see through the big changes afoot in the Town.

These include the West Coast Eagles relocation to Lathlain Park, keeping Burswood Peninsula in the Town, ensuring local sporting groups have the facilities they need, continuing the Town�s development into a vibrant Perth destination while maintaining its community spirit, increased youth engagement and vastly improved community consultation.

He has just retired from full-time teaching after 43 years, with his last stint as Belmont Primary School principal ending at the end of first term.