13 February 2024

Cook Shire mayor calls time on 20 years of community representation

| Lyndon Keane
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After serving the Cook Shire community for 20 years, including 16 in the top job, Mayor Peter Scott will not be contesting the local government elections in March, and says he is looking forward to spending time with his wife, Sayah, and family. Photo: Supplied.

After 16 years at the helm of Cook Shire Council, outgoing Mayor Peter Scott has some simple advice for those wanting to represent their community: leave your personal agendas at the door.

Mayor Scott, who has been on the council since 2004, and in the top job since 2008, has announced he does not intend to seek re-election when Queenslanders vote in new councils across the state on 16 March, 2024.

His retirement opens the door for new leadership in the council chamber, telling Cape York Weekly it had been a privilege to represent the community for two decades.

“After much contemplation, I have decided not to seek re-election,” he said.

“It has been an incredible honour and privilege to serve the residents of Cook Shire in my terms as a councillor, and more recently as mayor.

“I believe it is time for new leadership to continue to guide our community forward [and] I am confident that the foundation we have built together will provide a solid platform for the next mayor to continue the progress and address the challenges that lie ahead.”

Mayor Scott praised the “exceptional work” of council staff and said he was grateful for the support the Cook Shire community had provided over five terms in local government.

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While the Electoral Commission of Queensland is yet to update the nomination listing for all councils, it is understood two candidates have formally announced their intention to replace Mayor Scott – current Deputy Mayor Robyn Holmes, and Cooktown business identity Kenny Reid.

Mayor Scott said the best advice he could give to anyone intending to run for the mayoral seat was to embrace dedication, curiosity and commitment to the role.

“I encourage you to approach this responsibility with dedication, passion, curiosity, and a genuine commitment to the wellbeing of our community,” he said.

“Serving as mayor is a tremendous opportunity to make a positive impact on the lives of our residents.

“It’s imperative that candidates actively represent our diverse community and strongly advocate for our unique needs at local, state and federal levels.

“Remember, it’s not about personal agendas, but about working together with council teams for the betterment of our whole community.”

Mayor Scott said while he would no longer be an elected community advocate, his passion for Cook Shire had not waned.

“I look forward to contributing to the community in other ways, while also enjoying more time with my beautiful wife and family,” he said.

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