Mayor Neil Reilly announces retirement

Published on 05 July 2024

Mayor Neil Reilly

Mayor Neil Reilly has announced his retirement as a Councillor and Mayor at the end of the current council’s term in August.

Cr Reilly said after considerable thought he decided the time had come to bow out after 17 fulfilling years of service to our community.

“At the age of 71 the time has come for me to embrace a new chapter of life, one of productive retirement. I look back with immense pride on what we have achieved for our towns. Together, we’ve navigated challenges, celebrated victories, and above all, fostered a community that stands strong, resilient, and vibrant,” Cr Reilly said.

“The road ahead for Kiama is bright, and while I may no longer be at the helm, my commitment to our community remains unwavering. I look forward to watching Kiama continue to flourish, albeit from a different vantage point.”

“I am eager to explore new horizons, indulge in neglected hobbies, and perhaps finally have the time to perfect my grandfathering skills. I leave with a heart full of memories, pride in our achievements, and excitement for the future.”

“I want to extend my deepest gratitude to each and every one of the people I’ve shared this journey with, especially the many Council staff and of course my fellow Councillors.”

“Your dedication and passion for Kiama have not only inspired me but have been the driving force behind our collective successes. It has been an honour to serve alongside you, and I leave knowing that our Council and community is in capable hands.”

Cr Reilly was first elected to Kiama Council in 2008. He was elected again in 2013, 2016 and 2021. He served as Deputy Mayor in 2014 and was elected Mayor in 2022.

His personal highlights of that time include celebrating the 150th anniversary of Kiama C, securing the NBN before any other town, establishing the Gerringong Library, fighting the merger with Shoalhaven City Council and the more recent strategic and financial reforms begun under his time as Mayor.

He has served on numerous Council committees over his time including the Walking Tracks and Cycleways Committee. He was also a representative of Council on many national organisations including the Australian Coastal Councils Association (ACCA).

ACCA Chair (and Ballina Mayor) Sharon Cadwallader has wished well in retirement.

“Mayor Reilly has worked tirelessly for his community, both within Kiama and representing the area at state and national level. His contribution as an Australian Coastal Council committee member has been outstanding,” Cr Cadwallader said.

Cr Reilly will chair his last council meeting on Tuesday 13 August.

The local government elections are on Saturday 14 September.

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