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CAO issue put over until April

The absence of a CAO at Governor Simcoe Square is reportedly causing problems for Norfolk’s senior management team.Delhi Coun. Mike Columbus told Norfolk council this week that the CAO has traditionally played a utility role, filling in for senior managers when they are on vacation, taking a sick day or otherwise away from the office.Norfolk has been without a top bureaucrat since the sudden resignation of David Cribbs in mid-January. Columbus says this is creating continuity issues that should be addressed.Columbus bases his position on minutes from meetings of Norfolk’s senior management team.Norfolk’s senior managers meet frequently to co-ordinate strategy and projects. They also meet after council meetings to discuss council resolutions and directives and how they will be implemented.Minutes from these meetings are not available to the public.“There sounded like there were some challenges,” Columbus said.Columbus sponsored a motion at Tuesday’s meeting calling on Norfolk council to expedite the hiring of a new CAO. Columbus wants a replacement for Cribbs named before council’s summer recess.When the motion was presented, Columbus asked senior managers in the council chamber to explain how the absence of a CAO has complicated their jobs.However, Mayor Kristal Chopp intervened and asked for a deferral. Motions for deferral take precedence over everything else on the floor and Chopp was supported in a 5-4 vote. The matter was put over till April 9.After Tuesday’s meeting, Chopp said she had information she wants to share with council. Chopp said Columbus’s motion arrived on short notice and that there are considerations she wants to put before council before it proceeds.The CAO’s position in Norfolk pays about $180,000 a year.During January’s budget deliberations, council noted that it was saving “gapping” dollars on unfilled positions. Chopp said at the time that Norfolk County is operating smoothly without a top bureaucrat and that council would proceed with a search for Cribbs’ replacement when the time was [email protected] read more

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