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Mayor resigns but Kaipara health improving


- By Rob Pooley

Greg Gent KDC meeting-310Though Kaipara Mayor Greg Gent presided over his last Council meeting last Tuesday it was business as usual with a full agenda of important issues to deal with which came first before he tendered his official resignation.

In early October Gent announced his intention to resign after just a year in the position but has not, and will not, elaborate on the reasons for this sudden announcement.

He paid tribute to his Council members with respect to their diversity of backgrounds yet how they have formed a tight and fully functional group in steadying the good ship Kaipara.

Stability and prudent fiscal control were always foremost in his intentions after a lengthy spell of instability, and though unaudited to date, the fiscal signs are looking considerably better than for almost a decade.

Described as a strong and competent leader Gent said that the most important factor going forward was the Kaipara brand. He melded an active and functional governing body of which Kaipara had not had the benefit for some time.

Coming from a corporate background Gent was no stranger to pressure and acknowledged he was only a part of any decision-making process but had the utmost confidence in the council going forward.

In response, Councillors acknowledged his strength of leadership and willingness to make decisions to move Kaipara forward.

With his local knowledge of particulary the western part of the region coupled with that of Deputy Mayor Peter Wethey representing the eastern side, the Council felt there was a good balance overall in dealing with major issues and while this chain will now be broken, the Council are working well as a unit with every intention for this state to continue.

With the books now showing a deficit around the $50m mark, there is some evidence of progress under tighter management.

Mayoral duties in the meantime will be performed by Deputy Mayor Peter Wethey.

Nominations for a new Mayor will open this week and close on December 22.

Peter Wethey-240First Mayoral candidate

Mangawhai resident, Otamatea ward representative, Deputy Mayor and now acting Mayor, Peter Wethey is the first to throw his hat into the ring for the vacant Kaipara Mayoralty position. The by-election comes about through the unexpected resignation of Greg Gent. If successful his focus will be on continuing the momentum that is already happening, and stabilising and enhancing the future growth of Kaipara.

Outgoing Kaipara Mayor Greg Gent (left) presides over his final Council meeting.

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