BALLARAT City Councillor Ben Taylor will not stand for re-election.
Family and work commitments have prompted Cr Taylor to drop plans to stand in the October 27 local government elections.
But Cr Taylor did not rule out standing again for Liberal pre-selection in the 2014 state election, having reduced Ballarat East MP Geoff Howard’s margin to just four per cent in the last election.
“Between family and work and council, I couldn’t keep doing all three,” Cr Taylor said.
“One had to give, and it had to be council.”
Cr Taylor has four children aged from 11 years to nine months, and his work commitments have recently expanded to Bendigo.
“I love council and I will miss the interaction with the community and the ability to make a difference.
“It’s a very rewarding experience. There’s been a few rocky roads as we’ve gone along, but I love being engaged at that level.
“From the basics, such as helping a lady with a tree on her nature strip, to community development, I can walk away feeling like I’ve achieved something.”
Cr Taylor said he was still interested in pursuing a role in state politics.
“If the opportunity (for Liberal preselection) comes up again, I would love to do it.”
Cr Taylor said his four years on the council had been “very full-on”, including a state election campaign and the death of his father.
He said he was initially planning on standing again to see through major projects, including the Civic Hall, the saleyards, community grassroot works in Mt Clear and Buninyong, and Ballarat East development issues.
Cr Taylor said he was also proud the council didn’t bring politics into the chamber.
“We’ve started to verge on it at the end but at nearly every council meeting I had no idea which way councillors were going to vote.
“We rarely made decisions in the back room, and that’s democracy.”