Missing Victorian mayor found in Mount Isa

Ararat Rural City Council mayor Glenda McLean at the reopening of Willaura Railway Station on March 22. This was the last time some councillors saw the mayor in person. Picture: Ararat Advertiser.
Ararat Rural City Council mayor Glenda McLean at the reopening of Willaura Railway Station on March 22. This was the last time some councillors saw the mayor in person. Picture: Ararat Advertiser.

A mayor from a regional town in Victoria appears to have packed up and moved to Mount Isa in the middle of her term. 

Ararat mayor Glenda McLean dropped off the map last month and has resurfaced in the north west – some 2600 km from the town she represents. 

A spokeswoman from the Mount Isa Hospital confirmed Cr McLean is now working at the hospital. 

The Ararat Advertiser reported the Ararat Rural City deputy mayor Gwenda Allgood had not heard from the mayor in a few days.

Cr Allgood told The Ararat Advertiser on Monday that Cr McLean had asked to meet with councillors at 5pm on Tuesday ahead of the 6pm public meeting in Ararat’s Shire Hall, but she was not sure of the exact nature of the gathering.

“I think there is a meeting at about five o’clock before the meeting, that’s all I know,” Cr Allgood said

“I don’t even know if the meeting has a title at the moment.”

Other Ararat councillors have told Fairfax Media they had not seem or spoken to the mayor since last month. 

Cr Peter Beales said the mayor herself had outlined the importance of being part of the community in a recent opinion piece published by The Ararat Advertiser.

“I don’t know if she is working interstate. If she is, that’s a real problem. You can’t be interstate full-time. You could do a couple of days here and go back but in (The Ararat Advertiser) last week she made the comments about volunteers and all that,” Cr Beales said.

“The mayor’s package is $80,000-odd; it’s not chicken feed. With that sort of money you should have a full-time commitment to the community, so obviously people would be upset that she;s been missing all this time and not knowing where she is.”