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Media Release - Resignation of Central Darling Shire Administrator

Central Darling Shire Administrator, Greg Wright, has announced his resignation from the post effective from Friday 1 March 2019. His last visit to the Shire will be for the February Council meeting in the week commencing 25 February 2019.

After struggling with ill health over the past few years, Mr Wright has concluded that it is in everyone’s best interests that he stand down and allow a fresh perspective to be brought to the situation.

Greg Wright was originally appointed to the role in December 2013 for a three month term following the suspension of the councillors for that period. The (then) Minister for Local Government subsequently extended that suspension for a further three months and the Council was ultimately dismissed in November 2014 for a period of six years.

“In the five years since my appointment I have enjoyed very good relationships with the staff of the Council and the broader community despite having to make some difficult decisions to improve the financial sustainability of the Council organisation.” said Mr Wright. “I offer my gratitude to Greg Hill (current General Manager), Michael Boyd (General Manager 2014-2018), Brian Wilkinson (interim General Manager in the early days), the two Directors, Reece Wilson and Jacob Philp and general staff of the Council, the myriad of agencies and organisations with which I have dealt, and the general community and citizens of the Shire who have been most understanding of the circumstances and situations in which we have found ourselves over the past five years.”

“When I arrived in Wilcannia in the first week of January 2014, the Council did not have one dollar in cash and was indebted to its bank for up to $3 million, depending on the day. Together we put in place strategies and practices that saw the Council “return to the black” within that first year. Some of those strategies, including reductions in spending on roads and other services, were difficult but effective. I am delighted that we are now spending almost $10 million on road projects this financial year – an unprecedented program for the Shire.”

Continuing, he said “There have been reductions in staff numbers, however I am proud that this has been achieved largely through natural attrition and not through wholesale redundancies. Services have been rationalised and focussed, while facilities have been improved as we were able to allocate the funding. The Council’s annual operating budget has grown from $13 million in 2013 to $20 million this year. We have balanced the books and grown the operations of the Council and therefore, the benefits to the Shire community.”

He acknowledges, however, that there is still much to be done and he wishes his successor well in finishing the job that he has started. He anticipates that the Minister for Local Government will announce a new Administrator shortly.

“I will remember my time in the Shire and in the Far West very fondly and with considerable pride. I wish the Council and its community every success in the future” Mr Wright concluded.

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Media Contact: Greg Hill, General Manager - 08 8083 8900