AS IT HAPPENED: Gympie reacts to CEO’s resignation
THE abrupt resignation of now former Gympie Regional Council CEO Bernard Smith this week sparked a flurry of reactions from The Gympie Times readers online.
Mr Smith’s resignation was accepted by the council at an emergency meeting on Wednesday morning, less than two weeks into new Mayor Glen Hartwig’s term.
MORE ON BERNARD SMITH’S RESIGNATION
Mr Smith will finish in the job tomorrow, while the council’s corporate and community director Pauline Gordon has been appointed acting CEO until a permanent successor is found.
News of his departure broke as it happened on The Gympie Times Facebook page, and the critics’ voices were certainly the loudest:
Maria Wheeler: Best news we hear. Thank god for that.
Chez Gill: Good news! Let’s hope this is the start of a new and much needed direction.
Bron Noffke: Awesome news the wind of change is complete best wishes too all the new councillors and our new captain Mr Mayor Glen Hartwig. How good is living.
Chris Smith: Start changing the culture within council. Now start looking at the performance of each manager.
Debbie Graham: Good to see Glen 20 is working so well.
The Gympie Times website also saw some strong reactions, with one reader simply saying “good riddance”.
Another said: “Now Cr Hartwig should produce everything that he promised. The rattler report and the whole deal of (Bob) Fredman’s sacking. I bet we will not get one thing”.
Mr Smith’s nine years in the job were divisive, with the council’s achievements under his term including the award-winning Gympie aquatic centre and Smithfield St projects, the popular Youth Hub, and the blowout-plagued Rattler revival.
He also came under fire for the council’s spending habits, with operating costs running in the red for three of the past four years – including a $12 million operating loss last year.