Call for council to be 'sacked'

THE Oaks resident Hamish Wilson is calling for Camden Council to be sacked after the sudden dismissal of general manager Greg Wright last year.

Mr Wilson, who is one of the organisers of the Camden Show each year, is calling on residents to attend the January 29 council meeting en masse to protest Mr Wright's dismissal.

Mr Wilson said the sacking of Mr Wright, "a well respected general manager", had done a lot of damage to the council's reputation and its future prospects.

"This was the wrong decision," he said. "They have shown they don't deserve the responsibility they have been given.

"I was a Lib for 12 years and a National for the last four years.

"People of all political beliefs are against what they've done.

"It is amazing how they have managed to unite the people of Camden."

Mr Wilson said the five Liberal councillors had run on a platform of responsible financial management, but they had not delivered.

He said Mr Wright's pay-out would have reached almost $200,000 and there would have been other amounts he was entitled to, including any leave and entitlements owing.

Then there was the cost to hire a new general manager, Mr Wilson said.

"What they did was completely legal and they were within their rights to do it, but morally they owe an explanation to the people of Camden on why they've done this."

An advertisement for the Camden general manager position appeared in metropolitan papers on the weekend.

The advertisement called for candidates who had "extensive executive management experience, appropriate qualifications and a broad understanding of the provision of contemporary services and facilities to an astute and growing population".

On Monday mayor Lara Symkowiak reiterated to the Advertiser that because Mr Wright's dismissal was an internal staffing matter and was dealt with in a closed session of council, it legally had to be treated confidentially.

She said the general manager's contract was terminated as permitted by the clause in his contract.

"In my discussion with Mr Wright and deputy mayor Peter Sidgreaves in the week prior to the council meeting of November 27, Mr Wright expressed his preference that any discussion about the terms of his contract be held in a closed session of council as allowed for in section 10A(2a) of the Local Government Act 1993."