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Richard Welch standing for state

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By Colin MacGillivray

A sense of unfinished business has spurred Richard Welch to stand as the Liberal Party’s candidate for Yan Yean at November’s state election after an unsuccessful attempt win the federal seat of McEwen in May.

Mr Welch opposed incumbent member Rob Mitchell in the federal seat of McEwen, which overlaps with the state seat of Yan Yean in an area from Wallan East to Diamond Creek encompassing Whittlesea, Beveridge, Yan Yean, Doreen and Mernda.

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The seat has been represented by incumbent Labor member Danielle Green since 2002, but Ms Green will not run for re-election. Labor announced Lauren Kathage as a candidate to replace Ms Green in March.

Mr Welch said he had forged ties with communities in the region during his federal election campaign and was keen to continue advocating for them.

“Following the federal election, I had a break and spent time with my family,” he said.

“The thing that kept coming back to me was a sense of unfinished business. When you work closely with a community and you work on issues with them, to then have it all abruptly stop felt unfinished, and I wanted to keep going and finish the job.

“Particularly in Yan Yean, many of the federal issues carry into the state level – the Beveridge Interstate Freight Terminal in particular being a good example.

“There are also the same community issues of roads, sporting facilities, community resources and local regional jobs. These things are still important for the community, state or federal.”

Mr Welch said he would continue to display the work ethic he established during his federal election campaign.

“I don’t take anything for granted. The community has had 18 months to get to know me and I’ve had 18 months to get to know the community,” he said.

“I’m obviously coming comparatively late to the campaign, so in some senses I’m a known quantity but in another sense people are just as interested to know what I am going to deliver.

“Any momentum from the McEwen campaign would immediately dissipate if I’m not delivering something of substance to the community.”

Mr Welch said issues of health and education infrastructure would be crucial.

“I’ll measure my success, win or lose, in terms of my ability to bring solutions or opportunities to the table for the community,” he said.

“In doing that in McEwen, we saw [Labor] responded to that and we had more change in McEwen than there has been in a decade just by running a strong, locally focused campaign.

“I’m excited and energised to run. I’ll continue to listen hard to what the local priorities are and I look forward to presenting my plan for Yan Yean in the next couple of weeks.”

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  1. Met you during the Federal election and was impressed,first heard you were standing in the state election at Whittlesea market last week.
    Wishing you all the best and hope to see you about.

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