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Councillor Jeremy Harker stands down as Chairman of Council's Finance, Audit and Risk Committee

2021 09 30

Councillor Jeremy Harker signalled his formal intention to stand down as Chairman of Wairoa District Council’s Finance, Audit and Risk Committee at Tuesday’s meeting.


Members of Council’s Finance, Audit and Risk Committee reluctantly accepted Jeremy Harker’s resignation as chairman of the committee but insisted that he remain as a member of the committee.


I have really enjoyed chairing the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee. 


Our committee has done great work on behalf of Council and the community, and it has been an absolute privilege leading this work.


We have been able to bring in our Annual Reports in on time or even before the deadline and ensure that we have a process in place whereby we continue to do this.  All this hard work gives our community the confidence in Council’s processes and procedures.


Alongside this, the committee has worked hard to ensure that robust and rigorous financial and audit processes are now in place, improved financial reporting to Council and the community and a better understanding of risk, health and safety, and a focus on tracking actions and delivering good quality outputs.


There is a whole lot more work to be done but given my role as the newly appointed CEO of QRS I want to be able to dedicate the appropriate time to my Council roles, therefore the necessity to reprioritise my commitments are becoming much more pressing.


This is very much a planned process, to transition whereby we can ensure that there is a smooth handover of the work we’re doing, and I am confident that I will be leaving the chairmanship of the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee in very capable hands.


Mayor Craig Little said that under Jeremy’s leadership, the advice from the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee has given elected members and the community confidence in the financial, audit and risk processes now in place at Council.


Jeremy has always asked the hard questions and has bought a level of knowledge and understanding to this role. 


Under his watch, this has been possible because of the support and expert advice he has been provided by Council officers.


Councillor Denise Eaglesome-Karekare said the key to Jeremy’s success has been the relationships he has with everyone. 


Jeremy’s leadership has made the information reports received by the committee much more accessible.


The Finance, Audit and Risk Committee has gone from strength to strength.


Independent member, Philip Jones said that he appreciated the positive approach that Jeremy bought as chairman.  It gives me the confidence as your independent member that the right questions are being asked and that the community and our ratepayers can have confidence in our work.


Mayor Craig Little sought advice from the committee in using his Mayoral powers to appoint a new Chair and asked Philip Jones if he would be interested in becoming the independent chair of Council’s Finance, Audit and Risk Committee.  This was unanimously supported by members.


A recommendation will now be forwarded to Council endorsing the appointment of Philip Jones as the Independent Chair of Council’s Finance, Audit and Risk Committee


Jeremy Harker said I’m pleased that I have had the ability to see the endorsement of our latest Annual Report as one of my final acts as your chairman.  The work we do is a whole team effort, and I want to acknowledge everyone here, we are a really strong group and I have no doubt that we will continue to do great work.

30 September 2021

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