CEO re­signs

The Tribune (NZ) - - FRONT PAGE - GE­OR­GIA FORRESTER

Palmer­ston North City Coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive Paddy Clif­ford has an­nounced his res­ig­na­tion.

Clif­ford’s con­tract was due to run out in Septem­ber next year but he de­cided not to ap­ply to re­new it and his res­ig­na­tion will take ef­fect from the end of May 2017.

Clif­ford said that in the past nine years he had been priv­i­leged to work with many ex­cel­lent staff and elected mem­bers to de­velop the city. His time at the coun­cil was char­ac­terised by steady progress while keep­ing a tight rein on fi­nances, though there was also crit­i­cism about a lack of progress in driv­ing some cap­i­tal projects through to com­ple­tion.

‘‘The tim­ing of this an­nounce­ment should al­low coun­cil suf­fi­cient time to se­lect a re­cruit­ment agency, advertise the po­si­tion, in­ter­view can­di­dates and for the suc­cess­ful can­di­date to give no­tice if so re­quired,’’ Clif­ford said.

‘‘I have re­ally en­joyed this time with the city coun­cil and in par­tic­u­lar I’ve en­joyed work­ing with neigh­bour­ing coun­cils and var­i­ous or­gan­i­sa­tions in the re­gion and through­out the coun­try.

‘‘Palmer­ston North is well po­si­tioned for a very suc­cess­ful fu­ture and re­flect­ing over my past years in the city I’m proud to have played a small part in its prog- ress.’’

Na­tional MP and former city mayor Jono Nay­lor worked with Clif­ford be­tween 2007 and 2014.

Nay­lor said Clif­ford took up the job just weeks be­fore he be­came mayor. ’’We worked very closely to­gether in those years. I en­joyed work­ing with Paddy.’’

Look­ing back, Nay­lor said his one of his proud­est mo­ments with Clif­ford was around sort­ing the coun­cil’s fi­nan­cials and get­ting the coun­cil back on a sus­tain­able and se­cure foot­ing.

Ratepay­ers copped an 11.3 per cent rates in­crease in 2008 when the coun­cil de­cided to tame its mount­ing debt prob­lem.

Nay­lor said Clif­ford had worked hard on the Com­mu­nity House project, as well as balanc­ing the coun­cil books around bor­row­ing money and pay­ing back debt.

Nay­lor said there was fun, too, with jokes and pranks.

‘‘We worked very closely to­gether in those years. I en­joyed work­ing with Paddy.’’ Jono Nay­lor

Paddy Clif­ford will not ap­ply to re­new his con­tract as City Coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive.

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