Res­ig­na­tion ‘not de­sir­able’

Western Suburbs Weekly - - NEWS - By JON BAS­SETT

MOS­MAN Park Mayor Ron Nor­ris has re­jected any cri­sis cre­ated by the early res­ig­na­tion of chief ex­ec­u­tive Kevin Poyn­ton and the de­par­tures of two heads of coun­cil de­part­ments re­cently.

“It’s not as though it is a scorched earth sit­u­a­tion, al­though it’s not de­sir­able,” Mr Nor­ris said.

Last week Mr Poyn­ton (62) an­nounced he would not seek re­newal of his con­tract, due to ex­pire in mid-De­cem­ber, and would look at “other op­por­tu­ni­ties” af­ter four-anda-half years in the role.

He will stay on to help the coun­cil hire a new chief ex­ec­u­tive, who will choose re­place­ments for for­mer cor­po­rate ser­vice man­ager An­dres Gerten­bach, who an­nounced in Novem­ber he would leave, and for­mer reg­u­la­tory ser­vices man­ager Thomas Ab­bott, who re­signed be­fore Christ­mas.

Mr Poyn­ton will also have to com­plete Mos­man Park’s pro­posed new town plan­ning scheme and guide any out­come from a pro­posal for part of North Fre­man­tle to join the town, be­fore a po­ten­tial early de­par­ture about April.

Mr Nor­ris was in­stru­men­tal in bring­ing Mr Poyn­ton to the coun­cil.

He said the de­par­ture was par­tially ex­plained by dif­fer­ing opin­ions with some coun­cil­lors over is­sues in­clud­ing the bud­get last year, be­fore all met to dis­cuss staff lead­er­ship last month.

“My view was that he should re­main, and that was sup­ported by a few, but not the ma­jor­ity,” Mr Nor­ris said.

He said Mr Poyn­ton’s legacy in­cluded cre­at­ing com­mu­nity con­tacts and ser­vices, in­clud­ing se­cur­ing the fu­ture of the Mos­man Park RSL.

Mr Poyn­ton would not com­ment on the rea­sons for his early de­par­ture, but said the fu­ture would “prob­a­bly not” in­clude lo­cal govern­ment work.

He is a for­mer army of­fi­cer and said he might ex­plore op­por­tu­ni­ties with de­fence-re­lated or­gan­i­sa­tions and widen his cur­rent Red Cross work.

“What it is not go­ing to be about is six days a week at the golf club, a pipe and slip­pers,” Mr Poyn­ton said.

He said he was proud to con­tinue work­ing for the town’s RSL branch, whose mem­bers thought he was “the only link be­tween their sur­vival and de­struc­tion”.

Any new lead­ers of the coun­cil’s staff needed to cre­ate a “healthy cul­ture” for the coun­cil’s core busi­ness of serv­ing the com­mu­nity.

For­mer Pep­per­mint Grove chief ex­ec­u­tive Anne Banks-McAl­lis­ter has been hired as an in­terim deputy-chief ex­ec­u­tive at Mos­man Park.

Out­go­ing... Kevin Poyn­ton.

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