News

We’d like to rescind the rescission

By Tyla Harrington

A CONTROVERSIAL rescission motion regarding a committee overseeing the chief executive employment process was withdrawn at Campaspe Shire’s special council meeting on Tuesday night.

And in a bizarre twist of events Crs Leigh Wilson, Neil Pankhurst and Leanne Pentreath (those in favour of the committee to begin with) voted against the change of mind.

Cr Daniel Mackrell, who proposed the committee made up of Crs Wilson and Pankhurst, mayor Adrian Weston and deputy mayor Vicki Neele be formed, didn’t vote at all.

‘‘I abstained due to the waste of time the two councillors (Crs Neele and Annie Vickers) made of the CEO employment process (in regard to the rescission motion being taken to council but then withdrawn),’’ Cr Mackrell said.

Cr Mackrell initially proposed the motion because he said nothing had been done since council decided to advertise the chief executive position six weeks prior. But Cr Neele said that was not true and she put the rescission motion forward because she believed his motion was not necessary ‘‘because things were already in train’’.

‘‘We had the meeting the following day to start the (CEO recruitment) process,’’ she said.

Cr Neele said she attempted to withdraw the motion a week before the meeting (on Tuesday, March 26) but was told by the organisation she had to do it at this week’s meeting because it had already been advertised.

According to Local Law, if the motion has been accepted by the chief executive it must be listed on the agenda of the next available council meeting which means it can only be withdrawn at that meeting and not before.

When withdrawing the motion, Cr Neele said rather than ‘‘having more argument’’ she was happy to abide by the initial decision.

‘‘The reason for requesting the rescission motion in the first place was because we hadn’t had time to consider the fact that we had already employed a consultant in the role of assisting with the task of appointing a new CEO. That has now been overcome in as much as, time has been spent with the consultant and we are well on track to achieving the outcomes that are listed in the document here,’’ she said at the meeting.

The CEO Employment and Contract Committee will be responsible for setting timelines for the employment process and liaising with relevant staff, resources and legal facilitators to amend the chief executive’s contract.

This week councillors also appointed acting chief executives and current employees of council Paul McKenzie and Fleur Cousins to the role once Jason Russell leaves on April 12.