Auckland Council group chief financial officer Peter Gudsell has resigned - the second senior staffer to leave the council since September.
Gudsell’s departure in February comes midway through work on a new 10-year budget - the biggest financial measure that comes around every three years.
In late September, Mayor Wayne Brown’s head of communications and government relations, Kate Lynch, resigned barely six months into the job.
Gudsell, who at times has clashed with councillors, said in a statement that he leaves the council with mixed feelings but grateful and proud to be part of what the council has achieved, particularly over the past three years when Covid, weather events, climate impacts and a rollercoaster ride of interest, inflation and budget pressures have thrown so much at us.
“I’m departing at an important milestone in the long-term planning process, but what I hope is a good time for someone else to come in.
“I’m particularly proud to have been part of an amazingly talented finance team and an excellent executive leadership team, and I leave knowing that our council is in great hands,” he said.
After three years at the council, six years in local government, and 10 years in total in the public sector, Gudsell said he was “excited to step into another sector and challenge myself with making a difference somewhere else”.
Council chief executive Phil Wilson acknowledged Gudsell’s contribution to the council group, saying he and his team have consistently achieved high credit ratings, met external audit expectations and obligations as a publicly-listed organisation – “no mean feat when dealing with budget gaps and our own high standards when it comes to financial prudence”.