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Manukau City’s new man in the top job

Media Release

April 3, 2006

Manukau City’s new man in the top job

New Zealand’s third largest city has a new man at the top with Leigh Auton (Monday April 3) beginning work today as the Chief Executive Officer of Manukau City Council.

Mr Auton, 54, is a 28 year career veteran at Manukau City, having started as a planner and worked his way through senior management positions. He was Director of Environmental Management prior to becoming chief executive and has been Chief Executive Designate since September 2005.

Mr Auton, who has a Master of Arts (Hons) in Geography and a Master of Town Planning (Hons) degree, says Manukau is no longer a new, young city finding its place in greater Auckland.

Rather, he says, Manukau is now a mature, well-developed city, comfortable with its identity and sure of its place in the region. The city has a population of more than 350,000 with Council revenues of $ 335 million annually and total assets of nearly $5 billion.

Mr Auton says he is fortunate to be taking over the top job at Manukau as the city enters an exciting phase of its development.

“The key to the development of Manukau City is sustaining what we have already built and being accountable for the ordered growth and development of the city for the next generation,” says Mr Auton.

“Major challenges now for the city are to manage the effects of the region’s growth, building infrastructure such as roading and community facilities in a manner which is financially sustainable.”

Mr Auton says he is confidently embracing his new professional challenge, buoyed by the fact he has a talented, dedicated band of 1200 employees who are committed to providing excellent service to the people of Manukau City.

Snapshot - Manukau City
- More than 350,000 people
- Annual revenue of $335 million
- Total assets of nearly $5 billion
- New Zealand’s most diverse ethnic city

Snapshot – Leigh Auton
- Age 54 has served 28 years with Council
- Master of Arts (Hons) in Geography and a Master of Town Planning (Hons) degree
- Town planner and worked his way through senior management
- Former president New Zealand Planning Institute
- Manukau City Council’s third chief executive in 40 years


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