A new governance for education, written by Mr Hunter together with Professor Margaret Maden and Prof David Mallen, was due to be launched at a seminar in London this week.
As revealed in LGC (1 September), the paper proposes LEAs be merged with learning and skills councils into new sub-regional partially elected learning and skills authorities.
A Staffordshire CC member, who did not wish to be identified, said several councillors at Staffordshire were surprised by the content of the paper, particularly by criticisms of the standard of local officers and politicians.
Dr Hunter said he could not comment on members' reactions but added: 'I decided not to go to the launch because I think that being a serving officer, I should stay out of the presentation.'
Dr Hunter defends the paper in a letter on page 10.