The municipality of West Hants has fired its top administrator.

The decision to dismiss CAO Cathie Osborne was made Tuesday night following an in-camera session of a local council meeting.

In an official statement issued Wednesday afternoon, the municipality's warden Abraham Zebian thanked Osborne for her time as CAO, and said she "helped staff and council navigate through some difficult times."

Osborne took over the position in 2014 after the previous CAO, Cheryl Chislett, was charged with assault. Chislett was eventually convicted for assaulting her husband, as well as defrauding West Hants.

'Time to move on'

Zebian said the decision to terminate Osborne's contract was made because council wants new leadership.

"Council decided in order for us to get to where we want to be in the future that it was time to move on," he said.

When CBC contacted Osborne at home, she said she did not want to comment at this time.

Osborne had worked for Halifax Regional Municipality for 17 years before she was hired by West Hants.

Despite the sudden change, Zebian insists it will be business as usual in West Hants and said residents should not be concerned.

The municipality's director of finance, Martin Laycock, will serve acting CAO.