Melbourne’s inner-west faces a complete changing of the guard in state politics with Wade Noonan joining Marsha Thomson in announcing his retirement.
The Williamstown MP announced on Wednesday that he will be leaving parliament at the next election, less than a fortnight after the Footscray MP declared she would be standing down.
Mr Noonan said after 10 years in public life, he was satisfied that he had achieved everything that he had set out to do.
“Its been the greatest honour of my life to serve as the Member for Williamstown, and the Minister for Industry and Employment, Minister for Resources, and previously, Minister for Police and Corrections,” he said.
Mr Noonan cited securing a stronger ambulance service and the rollout of the Jobs Victoria program as among the highlights.
“I’m extremely proud of the many investments that have been made in schools, community facilities, roads, public transport and our local hospital in the Williamstown Electorate since 2007.”
The father of two took three months’ leave in February 2016, when Police Minister, to deal with the “human misery and suffering” his work had exposed him to.
Mr Noonan will immediately step down as Minister for Industry, Employment, and Resources but stay on as an MP until the November 2018 election to avoid a costly by-election.
Premier Daniel Andrews said that since 2014, Mr Noonan has served honourably and with distinction in the Labor Cabinet.
“The closure of the auto industry has been one of the greatest challenges for the Victorian economy in recent times and Wade has worked tirelessly to manage the transition and ensure auto workers are supported to retrain and find new jobs.
“Because of his work, local schools like Bayside College and Newport Gardens have received much-needed upgrades, pollution issues in Brooklyn are finally being addressed and the home ground of his much loved Williamstown Seagulls has been restored.”