Milne off panel for GM selection
THE search for a general manager for the Tweed Shire Council has hit a stumbling block after a councillor was kicked off the selection panel.
Councillor Katie Milne was ejected from the selection panel after making public comments about who she would prefer as the next general manager.
In a media interview Cr Milne said she would like to see a woman in the general manager's position.
That comment led to Mayor Barry Longland putting an urgent motion to councillors on Tuesday to have her removed from the panel.
"For me it was very important that this process is, and is seen to be, a process of equal opportunity," Cr Longland said.
"Any respect given to the gender of a successful applicant calls into question the validity of the process."
Cr Milne hit back at Cr Longland's move, and the subsequent vote to eject her, saying the statement was made in "light-hearted" conversation.
"There is no way I would vote to the detriment of this council and this community just because the applicant was a woman," Cr Milne said.
"It was a very innocent comment."
Cr Milne said there were some "unusual reasons" given for excluding some of the applicants but she was abruptly cut short by the mayor who warned her about revealing confidential information.
Cr Milne will still be able to vote on the appointment when the recommendation is put before the full council.