Roger MacKay is getting out of politics completely.
MacKay, who made headlines in August after he abruptly withdrew his nomination as the federal Conservative Candidate for Central Nova, has now announced that he will not be returning to his position as Westville mayor. He had been on a leave of absence until the end of October.
“It has been a privilege to serve as the Mayor of Westville for the past 11 years, and Town Councillor for 14 years before that. After 25 years of elected office, today I am announcing my retirement as Mayor of Westville and elected politics,” MacKay wrote on his Facebook page. “I believe it is time for new blood, and a fresh perspective for the Office of the Mayor.”
Lennie White, who as Deputy Mayor has been leading the council during MacKay’s leave of absence, confirmed that the town has received MacKay’s official letter of resignation.
“We will be checking with the Department of Municipal Affairs to see what the procedure is we have to follow.”
The next municipal election is scheduled for the fall of 2020. White said that the way he reads the Municipal Act is that if there is a vacancy of longer than six months than there should be a by-election. But he said he also understands that the Minister of Municipal Affairs can permit a change in special circumstances.
He said he hopes to have an answer on how they need to move forward by the time they have their next council meeting on Monday.
White said he is not aware of any particular reasons that MacKay decided to step down.
“As a council we were hopeful that he was going to come back,” White said. “It’s absolutely his decision to make and I respect that.”
The News could not immediately reach MacKay for comment, but in his Facebook post he thanked staff and council for the faith and trust they put in him and expressed gratitude to his family for their love, support and encouragement over the years.
“I am looking forward to spending more time with Jessie as we transition into a new chapter in our lives,” he said. “Westville is a wonderful place to live, raise a family and I hope during my time in elected office I have in some small way improved the lives of our Citizens.”