The Capel Shire Council has engaged an experienced local government executive to take the reins while CEO Ian McCabe continues personal leave.
Former long-serving Dardanup CEO Mark Chester has agreed to step into the role at Capel for three months. He was appointed at the Council meeting on Wednesday and will begin work next week.
Mr McCabe has been on leave since mid-April.
In recent weeks, Shire executive Jason Gick has been acting CEO but will now return to his position as Director of Infrastructure and Development.
Capel Shire President Cr Michael Southwell praised Mr Gick for taking over at short notice and steering the organisation capably through the pandemic response and shutdowns, which involved many short-term changes in Shire operations.
“It was quite a difficult time to lose our chief executive, but we have maintained all essential functions and the Council has continued with orderly decision-making, such as the current rates and budget deliberations,” Cr Southwell said.
“I think everyone understands that due to Covid-19 things will be a bit different, but we have witnessed great community spirit in Capel and people are showing incredible patience and forbearance in these difficult times — especially lately with the weather events which have also been thrown at us.”
“Mr Chester is a very experienced local government practitioner and will, I’m sure, bring a steady hand and good guidance to the Shire for as long as he is needed to fill this gap.”