New CAO could be in place by October, Phipps plans to be gone in December

CAO Mike Phipps

CAO Mike Phipps

By Ron Giofu

A new chief administrative officer (CAO) could be in place in Amherstburg by the middle of October with the current CAO gone not long after.

CAO Mike Phipps said the process is underway to choose his replacement and he believes that new person could be in place in October.

“My intent is, I’m hoping to be able to have the new CAO start in mid to late-October,” said Phipps.

Phipps said he wants to stay to make sure the Oct. 27 municipal election “runs as smoothly as possible” and to help the newly elected council through an orientation period. Part of that orientation process would see new council members invited to a day-long training session put on by Fred Dean, a former municipal lawyer from Sudbury, who also met with candidates at a session put on by the County of Essex in May.

Phipps added he would like to take the new CAO and the new council through the town’s new budgeting process in November and believes they could have a new budget before Christmas if that happens.

Once that is out of the way and the new council is sworn in, Phipps said he would leave shortly thereafter, likely no later than mid-December.

“That’s my plan,” said Phipps. “Then I’ll be gone.”

A four-person interview panel was set up originally to screen applicants but that was expanded to five people after a meeting Phipps had with council to discuss the process.

In all, 56 applications were received. The 56 applications will be pared down to 20 with the five-person panel whittling that down. The first round of interviews is expected to happen shortly with a second round of interviews to occur by the end of August.

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