The forward has impressed since moving to Firhill on loan earlier this season and the Jags boss is keen to retain his services for the remainder of Thistle's Irn-Bru First Division title challenge.
Dingwall boss Derek Adams last week stated that he had given Craig permission to speak with Thistle, insisting County won't stand in the player's way if he can do a deal with Thistle.
It is a move McNamara wants to complete but the Firhill gaffer says he needs his Highland counterpart to do his bit first.
He said: "It has got to come from Derek, he is their player. It is fine him saying we are free to talk to him but he is under contract with County.
"If he was a free agent then I would be free to talk to him but that is not the case.
"It is something that we are hoping we can do but we are not free to talk to him because he is under contract and he is their player. I don't understand how we are free to talk to him.
"He [Adams] has to sort stuff out with Stevie regarding the remainder of his contract and once he is free to go then we can begin to negotiate."
It proved to be a quiet weekend for McNamara and his Thistle stars after their First Division clash with Cowdenbeath was postponed due to a frozen pitch at Central Park.
The Jags boss saw title rivals Dunfermline and Morton both drop points and knows his side must take full advantage as they prepare for a home fixture with Raith Rovers on Saturday.
He said: "It was disappointing the game was off but we knew it was going to be struggling.
"It turned out well for us in terms of the other results so it is important that when we play the Cowdenbeath game that we take advantage of it.
"We are still top despite not playing, though it is only an advantage if we win the game in hand.
"We are looking for a good week's training and hopefully a positive result against Raith before Christmas."
One player who wasn't due to play on Saturday is midfielder Sean Welsh, who remains sidelined with an ankle injury.
McNamara noted that the club are "still waiting to see" the timescale on Welsh's predicted return.