Klein say's The New CAO Hire is a Missed Opportunity


Official Statement from Kevin Klein


The City of Winnipeg's new CAO selection is disappointing, unfortunately expected, and truly a missed opportunity. I hope that City Councillors will think long and hard about his decision and the opportunity we have.


This is not about Michael Jack. I admittedly have had few interactions with Mr. Jack because I am not a part of the mayor’s inner circle of Councillors. The interactions we have had were brief, polite, and professional. Did they result in what I was hoping for, no because it is the way it works at City Hall.


This is a missed opportunity to bring in a new approach to City Hall, with new ideas, creative solutions, and a leader with no relationships within the Public Service. Anyone with management experience would know this was the time to introduce change, considering the issues past, present, and future. No fault of one person, it has been the status quo at city hall too long.


Here's a look at just some of the issues:

  • The $1 million residents had to pay because of the police pension debacle

  • The impact fee defeat in court cost millions.

  • They missed the filing deadline for a $50 million lawsuit at the Deacon Water treatment plant.

  • The hiring of that same company we failed to sue on more than one occasion.

Consider the ongoing saga with the police headquarters. We still have no idea what happened. How many change requests were approved? And by whom? Did you know that the City of Winnipeg hired the same company that is accused of the HQ overruns, over the last few years? Those are just a few examples of the status quo, that I have a problem with.


My main issue is hiring from within because this was the perfect opportunity to create a new beginning. For the record, hiring internally was one of the reasons why I called for a delay in hiring a CAO until after the next election, which is about one year from now or possibly sooner. We know the mayor is leaving and I see this as an attempt to lock the city into his vision of maintaining the status quo.