At today’s monthly Tablelands Regional Councillor meeting (TRC) Mayor Rod Marti announced that council CEO Justin Commons had tendered his resignation yesterday (May 27) effective immediately.
At the meeting, the council resolved to accept Mr Commons departure, with Councillors Annette Haydon and Dave Bilney voting against accepting his resignation.
Councillors Bilney and Haydon both worked with Mr Commons during the previous council under Mayor Joe Paronella.
In a statement read out at the meeting Councillor Bilney said “It is a strong sense of disappointment, the announcement of CEO Justin Common’s resignation. I accept change is needed which I consider should be undertaken in a measured, controlled and informed manner. In my mind, Justin has been a hardworking supportive and loyal officer and his departure will be a sustainable loss to this organisation and the community at large.”
Cr Haydon didn’t want to comment at the time saying she was “quite upset’ choosing to issue a written statement:
“I am disappointed about Justin is leaving the organisation. I appreciate his efforts in lifting the organisation’s deficiencies. He has always had staffs best interest at heart. He attended and supported many town meetings, functions and community events as he was passionate about the broader area.”
At the meeting Mayor Rod Marti said “In the short time I’ve known Justin, he proved himself to be a professional and extremely hard working. And for councillors Bilney and Haydon who worked with him in the previous council, they held him in very high regard.”
Bob Owen, the council’s general manager of community planning and environment, will be the TRC’s interim CEO.
No reason has been given for the sudden resignation, but part of Mayor Rod Marti’s election campaign was to remove power from council officers and return it to councillors.