When Kiama Mayor Sandra McCarthy closes tomorrow night’s council meeting it will bring down the curtain on a distinguished local government career.
Cr McCarthy will end her 17-year stint as a councillor as Kiama prepares to elect a new council next month.
There have been many achievements, but perhaps her biggest was staring down the might of the Labor Party after she was expelled in 2001 for accepting the mayoral nomination from the council’s five elected independent councillors.
It didn’t go down well and ended a 15-year affiliation with the ALP, but Cr McCarthy’s rapport with the people of Kiama has seen her hold the mayoral role ever since.
‘‘My understanding was that you could always operate independently on Kiama council,’’ Cr McCarthy said at the time.
And that is exactly what she has done during her 12 years as mayor, representing the people of Kiama with vigour, tenacity and honour.
Cr McCarthy, who will stay in a caretaker role until the election, leaves a significant legacy, not the least the revitalisation of the Kiama pavilion, completion of stage five of the Blue Haven retirement village and the Jamberoo School of Arts.
She has been a loyal servant to Kiama and we wish her a long and happy retirement.
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