Liverpool Council CEO quits

Liverpool Council chief executive Farooq Portelli announced his resignation at the council meeting last night.

Liverpool Council's chief executive Farooq Portelli resigned last night. Picture: Simon Bennett

Liverpool Council's chief executive Farooq Portelli resigned last night. Picture: Simon Bennett

He said that after ten years of serving the council and the people of Liverpool it is now time for him to move on to seek out new challenges.

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"I would like to thank God almighty for anything I have done right and all of the mistakes that I have made along the way come down to me," Mr Portelli said.

"Liverpool has come such a long way in the past decade.

"We are now a thriving city with both a sound financial and bright future.

"I have been proud to have been part of this transformation and I leave with good will for the mayor and the council and wish them all the best for the future exciting plans of the city."

Liverpool Mayor Ned Mannoun acknowledged the contribution to the Mr Portelli made to Liverpool.

He said he hoped Mr Portelli would remember the good times between them and not the more difficult times they had experienced recently.

"I hope you remember the sunny days of your time here not your stormy days," Cr Mannoun said.

"Your job takes a lot of commitment and you have been very dedicated to council, never going home at 5pm.

"You have a lot to be proud of.

"But every journey goes in waves, there are ups and downs.

"I hope you remember the good times and learn from the difficulties."

He said Mr Portelli joined the council's financial services department in 2004 at a very difficult and challenging time.

"This council had been dismissed and was under administration.

"His brief was to work with the administrator to turn around the council’s finances.

"He excelled in this role proving his invaluable skills as a finance executive."

Cr Mannoun said Mr Portelli’s service was defined by major challenges including the 2010 fire that destroyed the council’s administration building where he was instrumental in leading the organisation through the recovery and relocation process.

"In one of the most challenging times in the history of this council, Mr Portelli provided the 700 council staff and community with stability and confidence in council's ability to quickly recover and continue to deliver services with minimum disruption," Cr Mannoun said.

He said Mr Portelli leaves the council in a strong financial position following a period of significant external pressures including the Global Financial Crisis and the additional pressures that come with significant long-term growth.

"I am joined by councillors and staff in thanking Mr Portelli for his loyal and diligent service to the Liverpool community and wish him well for the future."

Cr Mannoun then announced the appointment of Mr Rob Nobble as the acting chief executive officer as of March 27.  

"Mr Nobble has an extensive background in local government and is the former CEO of Rockhampton City and Caboolture Shire Councils and was Acting General Manager of City of Newcastle."

Several councillors paid emotional tributes to Mr Portelli.

Cr Tony Hadchiti thanked Mr Portelli for the service he gave to the council.

"When I first met you five and half years ago, I didn't like you," Cr Hadchiti said.

"We clashed from the outset, but I could tell you made sense and it was clear that you were giving us advice and doing things that were in the best interest of the council and of Liverpool.

"I would like to sincerely thank you for what you have given me as a person.

"We've gone through a lot of challenges, but you are leaving the council better than it was.

"I always think back to the days after the council fire and how hard you worked to make sure everything was back to normal.

"While councillors were running around and trying to get in front of video cameras, because all the media was here, you were concentrating on getting Liverpool back up and running again."

Mr Portelli said it is difficult for him to leave a job that he loves.

"I'm humbled by all of the kind words everyone has said," Mr Portelli said.

"I've loved every minute of my time here.

"I would love to thank the dedicated staff that have worked for me over the years."


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