Hills Liberals play musical chairs

It may have been a case of musical chairs at the Liberal Party state pre-selection last week, but The Hills councillor Mark Taylor’s endorsement was ‘‘emphatic,’’ senior Liberals said.

Cr Taylor will run for the new seat of Seven Hills it was decided on Thursday.

That seat is being vacated by former NSW Premier Nathan Rees who is retiring from Parliament at the next election.

Castle Hill MP Dominic Perrottet was chosen to run for the seat of Hawkesbury in next year’s state election — instead of current Londonderry MP, Bart Bassett.

COMMENTS: Click here to read Mr Perrottet's comments.

The seat of Hawkesbury is currently occupied by MP Ray Williams, who will run for Castle Hill.

Mr Bassett lost to Mr Perrottet 54 to 62.

Cr Taylor won 38 to 8 against University of Notre Dame lecturer, Dr Steven Treloar.

“With a 38 to eight result, Mark [Taylor] can rest assured that he has the backing of the entire party,” one local party official said.

In his acceptance speech, Cr Taylor said Seven Hills would likely become the party’s new ‘‘litmus test’’ seat and given former former Toongabbie MP Nathan Rees had announced his retirement, the lack of an incumbent would mean the party has a solid chance of victory.

He reminded party supporters that the area west of Old Windsor Road had not been represented by a Liberal MP since 1962.

Cr Taylor has strong ties with the area.

He was born in Eucalyptus Street, Toongabbie, and played sports at Max Ruddock Reserve for the Winston Hills Bears as a teenager.

His wife is a local schoolteacher.

■ The NSW Liberal Party State Executive is expected to ratify the endorsement before Easter.

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