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Doncaster chief to leave for New Zealand job

The chief executive of Doncaster Council is to leave the role in the summer for a new job in New Zealand.

The local authority confirmed yesterday that Jo Miller is to become the chief executive of Hutt City Council, near Wellington in New Zealand in July.

Ms Miller has been the top officer at Doncaster since 2012 and is also a former president of the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives.

In 2017, the Local Government Chronicle named her the third most influential person in local government.

In a statement, the council said plans for her successor are under consideration and will be announced in the near future.

‘This opportunity starts a new chapter in my public service career and I am looking forward to the challenge in a different country with a different set of challenges and opportunities,’ she said in a statement.

‘It goes without saying that I will miss Doncaster, Mayor Ros Jones, the leadership team, my council colleagues and partners in Doncaster and beyond.  It has been a privilege to lead and serve here.’

Mayor Ros Jones paid tribute to Jo Miller for helping Doncaster in its most testing times.

‘In Jo’s time at Doncaster she has helped shape us into a council that has high ambition for its residents and our future,’ said Ms Jones.

‘The last seven years have seen significant economic growth enjoyed by more of our people.  Educational outcomes have improved and we now deliver better value for money services despite an extremely difficult financial situation.

‘Whilst we will miss Jo, I want to thank her for her leadership, drive, vision and sense of humour that has helped us get through the toughest of times and set us on a course, through our joint leadership, to a positive one. Good luck Jo.’

In September 2017, the Doncaster chief spoke to New Start about funding challenges, as councils hit breaking point.

‘I think the big challenge for us as a country, and therefore for local authorities, is that we are kidding the British public,’ she said..

‘We are not talking to people about the size of the state we can afford and what people are willing to pay for.’

To read New Start’s interview with Jo Miller, click here.

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