Whitehorse council fires city manager

Whitehorse’s top bureaucrat has been let go. Late March 14, city hall issued a press release stating that the city “has revoked the appointment of Christine Smith as city manager, effective immediately.”

Whitehorse’s top bureaucrat has been let go.

Late March 14, city hall issued a press release stating that the city “has revoked the appointment of Christine Smith as city manager, effective immediately.”

Mayor Dan Curtis said Smith was fired without cause but wouldn’t go into any detail, calling it a “personnel matter.”

He thanked Smith for her work.

The city manager reports directly to city council and is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the city.

Curtis said council met at a public meeting March 14 at 5 p.m. and voted to revoke Smith’s appointment. The news release announcing Smith’s removal came out moments later.

City spokesperson Jessica Apolloni, said notice of the special meeting was posted on the bulletin board inside city hall 24 hours before the meeting took place. That is the minimum requirement under the bylaw, she said.

Linda Rapp, the director of community and recreation services, will be acting city manager until an interim city manager is appointed by council, the press release says.

“We’re going to be as timely and efficient as possible (when hiring a new city manager.) But we have incredible bench strength at the City of Whitehorse,” the mayor said.

Whitehorse’s city manager is appointed by council through a bylaw.

Smith was hired in March 2014.

She previously worked as director of community affairs for the Yukon government.

Smith was born in Calgary but lived in Whitehorse and Faro for parts of her childhood. She graduated high school at F.H. Collins Secondary School.

According to the city manager bylaw, which was amended in 2015, Smith’s salary is somewhere between between $175,000 and $195,000 a year.

The bylaw lays out how much the city pays a city manager if they are fired without cause.

In Smith’s case she is entitled, in lieu of notice, to six months’ base salary for her first year of employment and two additional weeks of base salary for every additional year she was on the job.

Contact Ashley Joannou at ashleyj@yukon-news.com

This post was updated to correct an incorrect date and add additional information. 

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