Greater Sydney Commission farewells Lucy Turnbull

In other news:

  • New Services Australia boss
  • Wanaroo Mayor appointed WALGA president
  • Advisor to oversee new Ipswich Council


Committee for Sydney farewells Lucy Turnbull

Lucy Turnbull

Former Sydney Lord Mayor Lucy Turnbull has wound up her role as Chief Commissioner of the Greater Sydney Commission.

During her four years at the helm, Ms Turnbull oversaw the release of the Greater Sydney Regional Plan, the NSW Government’s 40-year vision for the growth and development of Greater Sydney and the development and release of five associated District Plans.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian thanked Ms Turnbull for her leadership, saying she had spearheaded the transformation of Greater Sydney into a thriving and connected global city.

“Greater Sydney is well on its way to becoming a thriving metropolis of three cities and I thank Lucy for her outstanding service and leadership,” Ms Berejiklian said.

GSC CEO Dr Sarah Hill said Ms Turnbull’s hard work deserved to be rewarded with more personal time and other opportunities.

The new Chief Commissioner, Geoff Roberts, will continue Ms Turnbull’s work shaping the city and will help it rebuild after the coronavirus crisis, the Premier said.


Defence bureaucrat appointed as Services Australia CEO

The former Associate Secretary of the Department of Defence Rebecca Skinner has taken up a new role as CEO of Services Australia.

Rebecca Skinner

Her appointment in March came ahead of widespread job losses resulting from COVID-19, which overwhelmed the MyGov website and caused it to crash, leaving the minister scrambling to explain.

Announcing the appointment last month, government services minister Stuart Robert said Ms Skinner would bring critical capability to the role  at an important time in the transformation the portfolio, having previously driven reform across Defence.

After starting out with the Australian Signals Directorate, Ms Skinner went on to hold a number of Defence roles, including deputy secretary of strategic policy and intelligence and deputy secretary of defence people.

She has also served in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet as assistant secretary, defence and intelligence, and as a senior executive in the attorney-general’s portfolio.


New WALGA President

City of Wanneroo Mayor Tracey Roberts JP has been elected President of WALGA, replacing Cr Lynne Craigie.

Tracey Roberts

Mayor Roberts said she was looking forward to advocating on behalf of West Australian Councils.

“Despite the challenges faced by the sector, Local Government has been a leading example in collaboration with State and Federal Governments to achieve better outcomes for the community – we seek to pave an ongoing path towards successful partnerships,” she said.

Mayor Roberts has been a Mayor for nine years and a Councillor since 2003. She is the Vice President of the Australian Local Government Association, Deputy Chair of the National Growth Areas Alliance, WALGA Life Member and a Diploma of Local Government graduate.

Shire of Morawa President Cr Karen Chappel was elected as deputy.

WALGA CEO Nick Sloan congratulated Mayor Roberts and Cr Chappel while thanking outgoing President Cr Lynne Craigie for her contributions, including the formation of the State and Local Government Partnership Agreement, review of the Local Government Act, reinstatement of the Community Resource Centre funding and acknowledgement of our Association as one of the legislated training providers for Elected Members.


Advisor appointed at Ipswich

Ipswich City Council’s interim administrator Steve Greenwood will serve as an advisor for the first year of operations for the incoming council.

Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said the appointment would support incoming councillors and help restore good governance to Ipswich City Council after it was sacked last year.

“An advisor will ensure a smooth and seamless transition to a fully-elected council for the people of Ipswich,” Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said.

Mr Greenwood, who has a background in property and urban planning, said he looked forward to supporting the new council.

“It’s important we maintain the integrity of the substantial reforms achieved during the period of administration,” he said.

Mr Greenwood is the founding CEO of the Queensland Futures Institute, a former CEO of Canegrowers Australia and the former Queensland Executive Director of the Property Council of Australia.


WA Premier’s top bureaucrat stands down

Director General of the WA Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation Rebecca Brown is acting as Director General of the department of Premier and Cabinet after the former head Darren Foster stood down.

Premier Mark McGowan said Mr Foster was taking personal leave and would return to the public sector “in due course”, potentially helping the state’s economic recovery from COVID-19.

Mr Foster was last year accused of a breach of parliamentary privilege by a parliamentary Committee in relation to documents he provided to the Corruption and Crime Commission, which was investigating misuse of parliamentary allowances by former MPs.

Meanwhile Public Sector Commissioner Sharyn O’Neill will take a lead role in the state’s pandemic response as the public sector co-ordinator.


Kiwi council CEO heads to WA

The Chief Executive of New Zealand’s Napier City Council Wayne Jack has been formally appointed the new chief Kwinana Council in WA.

He is expected to start in May.

Wayne Jack

Mayor Carol Adam said Mr Jack, who comes to Kwinana with extensive local government experience,was chosen after an extensive and competitive selection process.

At Napier City Council, he led the development of a regional economic development and social inclusion strategy for Hawke’s Bay and saw Napier recognised as one of New Zealand’s best practice councils, she says.

In previous roles, Mr Jack was also the Director of Corporate Services at Lake Macquarie City Council in NSW followed by Victoria’s Yarra Ranges Council. He is a qualified chartered accountant and was a commander in the Royal New Zealand Navy.

According to local NZ media reports, Mr Jack had been negotiating an exit package worth almost $NZ1 million with his former workplace.


Hydro Tasmania CEO stands down

Tasmania is seeking a new chief for renewable energy generator Hydro Tasmania after CEO Stephen Davy announced his departure when his contract ends in September.

Mr Davy has been with the government business enterprise for more than 15 years, and was CEO for the last seven.

He led Hydro Tasmania to deliver a $195 million return for the 2018-19 financial year while investing more than $105 million into modernising and maintaining assets.

Premier Peter Gutwein says Mr Davy leaves a strong legacy, including paving the way for the Marinus Link and Battery of the Nation projects.

A recruitment process will be undertaken to appoint his replacement.


Turner and Townsend to provide project management for Sydney Metro West

Multinational professional services company Turner & Townsend has been appointed to provide Project Management Office services on Australia’s largest public transport project, the Sydney Metro West rail line.

The company previously worked with the NSW government’s Sydney Metro authority on the Sydney Metro Northwest line.

“World’s best practice project management principles and lessons learnt from Sydney Metro’s Northwest and the under-construction City & Southwest lines will be applied to Sydney Metro West,” Darren Munton, Head of Infrastructure, Australia and New Zealand said.

PMO services will include capital cost planning, risk management, schedule management and operating and maintenance cost planning.

The Sydney Metro West project will connect Greater Parramatta with the Sydney CBD and will double with a travel time target between the two centres of about 20 minutes.

Artist’s impression of the Sydney Metro West.


Indigenous education reformer to head NT department

Karen Weston has started a new role as Chief Executive Officer of the Northern Territory Department of Education.

Ms Weston joins NT Education from South Australia’s Department for Education, where she has been leading reforms including an Aboriginal Kindergarten-to-Year-12 lifelong education strategy.

Ms Weston replaces Vicki Baylis, who retired on 14 February.

Leanne Nixon, who has been Acting CEO since Ms Baylis’ retirement, will return to her role as Deputy Chief Executive of the Department of Education.

Education Minister Selena Uibo said Ms Weston was joining NT Education at an important time, with improvements in NAPLAN scores and Year 12 completion rates, including record Aboriginal student completion rates.


Real Media Collective appoints IR specialist

Consumer marketing specialist The Real Media Collective has appointed the former head of the Printing Industry Association of Australia’s IR team to lead its IR, Policy and Governance operations.

Charles Watson

Charles Watson is the leading industrial relations expert for our industry. I am pleased to have him on board and provide support our members have been asking for over these past weeks,” CEO Kellie Northwood said.

Mr Watson said the industry was dealing with a once in a lifetime time global crisis as a result of COVID-19.

“I look forward to focusing on dealing the challenges facing the industry overall,” he said.

The Collective is currently negotiating with Australia Post to relax regulations for publishers and lobbying to rein in the price of postage on direct mail.

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