Hepburn Shire council restructure: six jobs made redundant

The Hepburn Shire’s tourism and economic development boss John Collins has lost his job under a restructure of the council’s executive management team.

Six executive positions were merged into three under the changes announced publicly by the council two days before Christmas.

The role of Tourism and Economic Development manager has been abolished, with former community development head Adam McSwain taking on more responsibility as Community and Economic Development manager.

Mayor Don Henderson said the restructure freed up more funds for workers on the ground.

“We needed to concentrate on a more holistic approach rather than tourism being the be all and end all of economic development,” he said.

“We won’t be doing less work. What we’ll be doing is ensuring everyone who is working for us is working efficiently.”

Executive engineer Richard Russell’s job was also scrapped.

Grant Schuster moves into the newly created head of Strategic Asset Management and a Strategic Project Delivery manager replaces former risk and property, and asset and engineering services roles.

Cr Henderson said the councillors had asked the chief executive to look at the way the organisation delivered projects and to find improvements.

In a media statement issued on December 23, the council said a new organisational structure had been implemented “following an extensive review of the management structure”.

Hepburn Shire chief executive Aaron van Egmond said the council was looking to improve its long-term sustainability while strengthening service delivery to the community.

“Our focus on tourism is as strong as it always has been,” he said.

The council made a commitment in its 10-year plan to low rate rises of four per cent a year for the next nine years.

rachel.afflick@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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