Waipā District Council chief executive, Garry Dyet, has announced he will depart the organisation in mid-2024 after nearly 45 years with the organisation.
The career public servant has spent the last 15 years as the Council’s chief executive.
“He has given Council seven months to find a replacement, only leaving once the 2024-2034 Long-Term Plan has been adopted,” said Waipā Mayor, Susan O’Regan.
“His extended notice will help take Council through what will be a very challenging few months as we confirm the Long-Term Plan. It will also allow a new chief executive to hit the ground running with key pieces of work completed and before we go into another election in 2025. That’s important and I am grateful for Garry’s considered approach.”
Mr Dyet began his career at Council in 1980, joining as a health inspector. He then moved to the planning function, completing a Master’s degree in public policy while working.
“I take huge pride that Waipā is recognised for excellent planning in terms of land-use and infrastructure. This Council has made robust infrastructure investments as well as investing in some amazing community facilities. It’s crystal clear not many districts can claim that and some now have serious issues to contend with,” he said.
Over his tenure, Mr Dyet say she has had the advantage of “stable and strong political leadership” and, as chief executive, has worked under Mayors Alan Livingston, Jim Mylchreest and now O’Regan.
“I take my hat off to anyone who stands for public office. It is a role which has become increasingly difficult in an age of misinformation,” he said.
He said local governance has changed dramatically over the last five decades.
“Local government has gone through huge change in the last 45 years. In simpler times we were able to be closer to ratepayers and directly accountable for our decisions through standard democratic processes. In other words, the buck would stop with us and we could make changes accordingly.”
“Now we are awash in legislative and audit requirements, much of it pushed onto councils by central government without any understanding of what the impacts on our communities will be. It has been frustrating to watch it unfold because it has not always been positive.”
He said the coming seven months would be dominated by a financially challenging Long-Term Plan and by the adoption of the Ahu Ake Waipā Community Spatial Plan.
“There’s a lot going on and a lot for everyone to get their heads around and my job is still to help this organisation be as prepared as it can be.”
Mayor O’Regan said a replacement for Mr Dyet would be managed by an external recruiter with a recruitment search kicking off in the new year.