Coorong council chief executive officer Vincent Cammell has resigned, the council has announced.
Mr Cammell quit effective Friday, August 9, but the council did not announce his departure until the following Thursday.
The CEO had disagreed with councillors about where the council needed to go in years to come, Mayor Paul Simmons told The Standard.
He said Mr Cammell had received a payout "within the terms of his contract", but declined to say how much the council had paid.
In an official statement from the council, Cr Simmons acknowledged the former CEO's contribution to the council and wished him well in his future endeavours, but focused squarely on the future.
"We now have a great opportunity, with a new council and a new executive team, to re-chart the course of council, especially given we have budgeted in 2019-20 to undertake a review of our strategic plan, service levels and rating policy," he said.
"While (Mr Cammell's) experience will be missed, new ideas and a fresh set of eyes will be invaluable."
The council will advertise nationally for a replacement, pending the approval of a recruitment plan by councillors at their next meeting on Tuesday.
The CEO role is temporarily being filled by freelance executive Graeme Maxwell at present.
Councillors will consider whether to extend his contract, seek other outside help, or rely on promoting from within until the vacancy can be filled.
That process could take until early next year, the council said.
Cr Simmons said he did not anticipate any problems with the recruitment of a new CEO, and that the council was "absolutely" still an employer of choice.
"For whatever reason, plenty of people want to be the CEO of a council," he said.
Mr Cammell started with the Coorong council in 2013, having previously worked at the City of Adelaide, and helped usher in construction of The Bend Motorsport Park.
He also oversaw the completion of Coonalpyn's silo artwork, Meningie's stormwater and main street upgrades and new playgrounds and town welcome signs; the attraction of funding to the Murray Coorong Trail.
He had been on leave for several months prior to his departure.
His low-key exit contrasted with the fanfare around the departure of long-term executive Nat Traeger to a role with the Kingston District Council in June.
The council had not mentioned Mr Cammell's departure on social media at the time of publication.
Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly suggested unsealed road maintenance had increased during Mr Cammell's tenure, based on an error in a press release issued by the council.