Ken Keith returns as Parkes mayor

Cr Ken Keith – now in his 34th year in local government – has returned as Parkes Shire’s mayor for another two years.

Cr Barbara Newton has also taken on the deputy mayor role again following the mayor and deputy mayor election at the first meeting of the new council on Tuesday, September 20.

Councillors – missing Cr Neil Westcott, who is out of the country – gathered at the Parkes Shire Council Chambers at 2pm to first take the Oath or Affirmation of Office.

They then elected their mayor and deputy mayor before the beginning of the first ordinary meeting for the 2016-2020 term.

In what general manager Kent Boyd described as a new formality Parkes has never carried out before, one by one the nine councillors stood before the meeting to read the Oath or Affirmation.

Cr Westcott had taken his Oath on Friday, September 16.

Director of technology and corporate services Les Finn acted as the returning officer for the mayoral and deputy mayoral election.

Cr Keith was the only nomination put forward for the mayor’s role and he was elected mayor unopposed. 

There were two nominations for the deputy mayor position, Cr Newton and Cr Alan Ward, where a vote was conducted by ordinary ballot.

Cr Newton won the ballot with seven votes to Cr Ward’s two.

Cr Keith and Cr Newton gave brief thank you speeches and said they were looking forward to the future and growing Parkes.

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