Tauranga City Council's leader of the chief executive department has resigned.

Kirsty Downey handed in her resignation last week, citing personal reasons.

Chief executive Garry Poole said he regretfully accepted the resignation.

Downey has served at the council for 19 years "and quickly became council's trusted and only in-house legal adviser".


"Her leadership was recognised in 2016 when appointed to her current position ... she has worked tirelessly for this city and her resignation leaves a big hole for [the] council to fill," Poole said.

Downey has been the project lead in the council's response to the Bella Vista Homes development since the council actioned an evacuation of 21 homes in The Lakes in March, having learned the properties were too dangerous to live in.

Poole said the council's Bella Vista project comes to an end on June 6. Councillors will meet with homeowners before closing the meeting to deliberate on the next course of action.

"However, Kirsty will be here until 29 June and will continue to have oversight on the matter until then.

"This was a personal decision that Kirsty has taken her time to think through. She has been ... a highly valuable member of our team."

A draft report from Justice Paul Heath, QC, into the council's role in the Bella Vista issue was due last week.

Poole will also be leaving the council after his fixed-term contract came to an end earlier this year. He has been asked to stay on in the role as chief executive until his replacement ,Marty Grenfell, begins in September.