Mayor of Tumut Shire Council at the time of the amalgamations, Sue Bulger, has decided not to run for council this year.
Ms Bulger was a councillor for 16 years before assuming the role of mayor in 2015, making her the first indigenous mayor of Tumut. However, she has decided that it’s time for her to move on and focus on other parts of her life.
“I’ve made the decision not to run,” she said.
“I’ve been there done that, and I’m two years out from retirement and I don’t want to lock myself in for four years.”
Ms Bulger said that she is not personally aware as to who else is planning to run.
However, she said she hoped it was a mix of seasoned political operatives and, hopefully, some new blood.
“It’s time for some new people to step up,” she said.
“It’s a new council, but a lot of experienced councillors will probably run as well so that’s good. I’m hoping there will be some younger people, just so that there will be a good mix of old and young, a good mix of people with some diversity and some new ideas.”
However, she echoes the sentiments of other former councillors in recognising that the nature of local government makes it difficult to run for those who work full-time, or who have non-flexible responsibilities.
“It’s a big commitment,” she said.
“If you’re working full time it’s extremely difficult, and it’s extremely tiring if you have a busy workload on top of your other workload.”
Sue Bulger was Mayor of the Tumut Shire for one year prior to the amalgamation, with Trina Thomson serving as Deputy Mayor.