Cr Richard Ziegeler has resigned as Warrnambool City Council Mayor, effective from noon on Monday March 21.
Cr Ziegeler will continue on as a Councillor, with Deputy Mayor Cr Debbie Arnott to serve as Acting Mayor.
In accordance with the rules outlined in the Local Government Act, a meeting will be held within the next month to elect a new Mayor for the remainder of the current Mayoral Term, with the annual Mayoral Election to be held in October as usual.
Cr Ziegeler cited reasons of health and family commitments for his decision.
“I was truly honoured to be elected Mayor of Warrnambool last October,” Cr Ziegeler said.
“Warrnambool is a thriving city with so many positive attributes and there are even more good things on the horizon.
“Major projects that will have long-lasting benefits including the new Warrnambool Library, Reid Oval and Lake Pertobe Adventure Playground will all be completed this year.
“Looking ahead, work to upgrade the Port of Warrnambool and improve boat launching facilities is progressing well, with a tender for the project awarded by Council last month.
“While I have taken the difficult decision to step down as Mayor for health and family reasons, the role has allowed me to meet some of the most wonderful people throughout our community doing the most amazing things.
“It is the people of Warrnambool who make this city what it is, and I look forward to continuing to serve them as part of the Council team.”
Cr Debbie Arnott said that she accepted the role of Acting Mayor and thanked Cr Ziegeler for his service.
“While he only led the city for a short while, I think Richard achieved a lot and should be proud of his time as Mayor,” she said.
“In acknowledging that he has made the decision to take a step back from leading the city for personal reasons, I am very happy to see that he has decided to remain on Council.
“Cr Ziegeler is a dedicated person who always has the best interests of Warrnambool at heart.”
Warrnambool City Council Chief Executive Officer Peter Schneider also expressed his thanks to Cr Ziegeler for his time as Mayor.
“Cr Ziegeler embraced the role of Mayor and brought energy and insight to everything he did,” he said.
“Council has identified a number of priority projects in our advocacy plan adopted last December, and under Cr Ziegeler’s mayorship, we are already beginning to tick them off.
“A 20-year plan for the development of Bushfield and Woodford has been funded, as has a business case for a new Warrnambool Art Gallery building.
“I’d like to thank Cr Ziegeler for his time as Mayor and I look forward to continuing to work with him to make Warrnambool a better place for everyone.”
Details regarding the date of the election of a Mayor for the remainder of the current Mayoral Term will be made in due course.