Area Managers
Monday, May 21, 2012 at 8:57AM
Bill Barclay

In one of David Hammond's smarter moves since he came aboard, he has made two appointments that will have wide approval.

The first was to appoint Greg Hampton to the Area Manger position in Thames - he will cover both Coromandel and Thames, and is an excellent operator who will have widespread approval from around the District, and more particularly in this area where he has been a helpful and totally professional servant of the Council for some considerable time. He has had severe illness over recent years that has not prevented him from achieving prominence in the cycling world.

The second was the inevitable promotion of Sam Marshall, but surprise, surprise to Whitianga, well away from the baleful influence of Board Chair Keith Johnston. Sam has been an excellent manager - my experience of him relates to the manner in which he guided the controversial waste-water plant, and marina projects through all their travail to a successful outcome. But he has clearly been far too heavily influenced by Chair Johnston who seems to have an unfortunate tendency to want to interfere in management functions. His influence in regard to the content of the 'empowerment' document was obvious, and Sam made far to little effort to separate himself from this self appointed mentor. He will do well in Whitianga, and this appointment puts the final nail in the coffin of Leslie McCormick who has always had a 'difficult' relationship with Cr McLean who is the Eminence Gris in that area, and has other issues that I will not detail here.

The new Whangamata appointment will be announced early next week. It will need to be someone with the strength, and ability to deal with the demands of Keith Johnston. I would bet a pound to a packet of peanuts that that will be foremost in Hammond's mind at this moment. It not, it should be.




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