He may only be here for less than a month, but acting general manager of Armidale Regional Council David Kerr is looking forward to throwing himself into the role and continue to help council through difficult times.
On Wednesday, interim administrator Viv May issued a statement advising that Mr Kerr would be appointed as acting general manager from July 31 to August 23, at which point John Rayner would be taking over as acting general manager.
"A number of residents have contacted me in relation to development matters outstanding with Council noting their frustration with time delays and I have met with several," Mr May said in his statement.
"In the meetings I have made it very clear that it is not my role, nor while I become involved or offer comment in the assessment of applications. This is clearly the responsibility of people who hold the requisite qualifications.
"Mr Kerr is very well qualified to provide some general advice to me in relation to the processes used at Armidale Regional Council on the assessment of such development matters and I have asked for an overview to be prepared including the resourcing of the area."
Mr Kerr is currently the Director of Community and Belonging at Northern Beaches Council and has also had experience as acting general manager of Northern Beaches Council on three occasions as well as the former Warringah Council on multiple occasions as well.
"Generally the role that I've undertaken has been similar in tenure as this role in Armidale so I'm well versed in how much time I have and what you obviously can and can't do in that short amount of time," Mr Kerr said.
"Most importantly, council is here for the community and what one of the key things I would like to do in my very short time is ensure that council continue to deliver those services that the community relies on.
"We're obviously going through some difficult times with COVID-19 and more challenging times in 2020 but we still have a strong connection with our community and that's critical we're putting them at the forefront of what we're doing."
Mr Kerr hasn't spent a lot of time in the Armidale area, but does have some connection to the wider region with his father being born in Inverell. He's looking forward to "seeing the local area" during his time in Armidale.
"I'm really excited to be here in Armidale and I'm really going to throw myself into the role for the three to four weeks that I'm here and looking forward to getting to know the region a little bit better and exploring some of the local things to do," he said.
"And obviously making sure that again that our staff and the community of Armidale are getting everything they need from the council."