John So and Co spend up big 32 Million Dollars spent on Games and $170,000 on free tickets for Councillors, Staff, invitees and hangers-on

John So spends up Big using ratepayers money to fund Councillors, Staff and guests.

The Herald sun reports that the City Council will have spent 32 Million dollars on the Commonwealth Games.

And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Much more had been spent not only by this council but also the previous two Councils including free trips to the Sydney 2000 Olympics, Trips during and after the Manchester games in London and staff have also been spending big visiting various sporting events around the world all attributed to the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games.

If there were Gold medals on offer for the most perks and less then the City Council would be a major contender. No accountability and no shame.

Like pigs with snorts in the trough eating cream.

John So and his fellow Councillors and senior staff have been living a International jet-set playboy like millionaire businessman lifestyle at ratepayers expense. $800.00 a night 5 star accommodation, fist class business travel costing $20,000 a week. Last year the Council spent $400,000 in overseas trips alone.

“Melbourne City Council will spend $170,000 on 728 Games tickets and spots in the lavish, 16-seat hospitality box with most tickets going to hangers-on” reports the Herald Sun

The Melbourne City Council, forever seeking to avoid disclosure and accountability, has consistently refused to release details of invitees, including who will take up 37 opening ceremony tickets costing $590 each with Chinese guests receiving the lions a share of invitations on offer. ( And I thought Hong Kong was no longer part of the Commonwealth)

No one in the Council seams to knows what is going on and or how much it is really costing the City. David Pitchford, Melbourne City Council CEO, reports 21 delegates from Tianjin had accepted invitations, but Cr So last night claimed it was only 12. (Who is telling the truth). Seems like our communist siblings are also into free junkets when they are on offer.

Quarter of a million dollars in contingency funding above and beyond the money already spent and allocated. Council staff will be treated to city accommodation for the Games, costing $13,000. (Don’t they have homes?)

Meanwhile Staff have been distracted from their normal duties with their attention focused on the 2 week Games event next month.

Comments reported in the Herald-sun allude to John So and his fellow Councillors looking to impress in the hope of securing reciprocal invites to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

John So and the City Council are up for re-election in November 2008 and given the bill they are racking up I doubt if any of them will be re-elected but John is hoping to scam a few more benefits before he hands over the gold chains and robe (We’re still not sure about who owns the possum skin coat)

Meanwhile the City Council continues to avoid full disclosure of the costs associated with internal catering, inbound missions and the cost of the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Limousines estimated to be all up costing ratepayers all up over one million dollars a year. It would have to be one of the most corrupt governments in Australia with the amount of money they spend avoiding accountability getting well into the 100’s of thousands of dollars.

The City Council should come clean and publish on it’s internet site a full account of Games expenditure for all to see and let them be the judge if the excesses of our Lord Mayor, Councillors and staff can be justified.

Have no fear if they continue to abuse the system and refuse to publish the information we will make an FoI application and raise this issue again around budget time. The can continue to waste Council’s funds and resources but they will in the end be held to account.

John So and Co spend up big 32 Million Dollars spent on Games and $170,000 on free tickets for Councillors, Staff, invitees and hangers-on

John So spends up Big using ratepayers money to fund Councillors, Staff and guests.

The Herald sun reports that the City Council will have spent 32 Million dollars on the Commonwealth Games.

And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Much more had been spent not only by this council but also the previous two Councils including free trips to the Sydney 2000 Olympics, Trips during and after the Manchester games in London and staff have also been spending big visiting various sporting events around the world all attributed to the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games.

If there were Gold medals on offer for the most perks and less then the City Council would be a major contender. No accountability and no shame.

Like pigs with snorts in the trough eating cream.

John So and his fellow Councillors and senior staff have been living a International jet-set playboy like millionaire businessman lifestyle at ratepayers expense. $800.00 a night 5 star accommodation, fist class business travel costing $20,000 a week. Last year the Council spent $400,000 in overseas trips alone.

“Melbourne City Council will spend $170,000 on 728 Games tickets and spots in the lavish, 16-seat hospitality box with most tickets going to hangers-on” reports the Herald Sun

The Melbourne City Council, forever seeking to avoid disclosure and accountability, has consistently refused to release details of invitees, including who will take up 37 opening ceremony tickets costing $590 each with Chinese guests receiving the lions a share of invitations on offer. ( And I thought Hong Kong was no longer part of the Commonwealth)

No one in the Council seams to knows what is going on and or how much it is really costing the City. David Pitchford, Melbourne City Council CEO, reports 21 delegates from Tianjin had accepted invitations, but Cr So last night claimed it was only 12. (Who is telling the truth). Seems like our communist siblings are also into free junkets when they are on offer.

Quarter of a million dollars in contingency funding above and beyond the money already spent and allocated. Council staff will be treated to city accommodation for the Games, costing $13,000. (Don’t they have homes?)

Meanwhile Staff have been distracted from their normal duties with their attention focused on the 2 week Games event next month.

Comments reported in the Herald-sun allude to John So and his fellow Councillors looking to impress in the hope of securing reciprocal invites to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

John So and the City Council are up for re-election in November 2008 and given the bill they are racking up I doubt if any of them will be re-elected but John is hoping to scam a few more benefits before he hands over the gold chains and robe (We’re still not sure about who owns the possum skin coat)

Meanwhile the City Council continues to avoid full disclosure of the costs associated with internal catering, inbound missions and the cost of the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Limousines estimated to be all up costing ratepayers all up over one million dollars a year. It would have to be one of the most corrupt governments in Australia with the amount of money they spend avoiding accountability getting well into the 100’s of thousands of dollars.

The City Council should come clean and publish on it’s internet site a full account of Games expenditure for all to see and let them be the judge if the excesses of our Lord Mayor, Councillors and staff can be justified.

Have no fear if they continue to abuse the system and refuse to publish the information we will make an FoI application and raise this issue again around budget time. The can continue to waste Council’s funds and resources but they will in the end be held to account.

John So and Co spend up big 32 Million Dollars spent on Games and $170,000 on free tickets for Councillors, Staff, invitees and hangers-on

John So spends up Big using ratepayers money to fund Councillors, Staff and guests.

The Herald sun reports that the City Council will have spent 32 Million dollars on the Commonwealth Games.

And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Much more had been spent not only by this council but also the previous two Councils including free trips to the Sydney 2000 Olympics, Trips during and after the Manchester games in London and staff have also been spending big visiting various sporting events around the world all attributed to the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games.

If there were Gold medals on offer for the most perks and less then the City Council would be a major contender. No accountability and no shame.

Like pigs with snorts in the trough eating cream.

John So and his fellow Councillors and senior staff have been living a International jet-set playboy like millionaire businessman lifestyle at ratepayers expense. $800.00 a night 5 star accommodation, fist class business travel costing $20,000 a week. Last year the Council spent $400,000 in overseas trips alone.

“Melbourne City Council will spend $170,000 on 728 Games tickets and spots in the lavish, 16-seat hospitality box with most tickets going to hangers-on” reports the Herald Sun

The Melbourne City Council, forever seeking to avoid disclosure and accountability, has consistently refused to release details of invitees, including who will take up 37 opening ceremony tickets costing $590 each with Chinese guests receiving the lions a share of invitations on offer. ( And I thought Hong Kong was no longer part of the Commonwealth)

No one in the Council seams to knows what is going on and or how much it is really costing the City. David Pitchford, Melbourne City Council CEO, reports 21 delegates from Tianjin had accepted invitations, but Cr So last night claimed it was only 12. (Who is telling the truth). Seems like our communist siblings are also into free junkets when they are on offer.

Quarter of a million dollars in contingency funding above and beyond the money already spent and allocated. Council staff will be treated to city accommodation for the Games, costing $13,000. (Don’t they have homes?)

Meanwhile Staff have been distracted from their normal duties with their attention focused on the 2 week Games event next month.

Comments reported in the Herald-sun allude to John So and his fellow Councillors looking to impress in the hope of securing reciprocal invites to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

John So and the City Council are up for re-election in November 2008 and given the bill they are racking up I doubt if any of them will be re-elected but John is hoping to scam a few more benefits before he hands over the gold chains and robe (We’re still not sure about who owns the possum skin coat)

Meanwhile the City Council continues to avoid full disclosure of the costs associated with internal catering, inbound missions and the cost of the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Limousines estimated to be all up costing ratepayers all up over one million dollars a year. It would have to be one of the most corrupt governments in Australia with the amount of money they spend avoiding accountability getting well into the 100’s of thousands of dollars.

The City Council should come clean and publish on it’s internet site a full account of Games expenditure for all to see and let them be the judge if the excesses of our Lord Mayor, Councillors and staff can be justified.

Have no fear if they continue to abuse the system and refuse to publish the information we will make an FoI application and raise this issue again around budget time. The can continue to waste Council’s funds and resources but they will in the end be held to account.

Council’s avoidance and censorship Finance Committee minutes confirms Councillors’ refusal to publish reports that are critical of the Council

Minutes of the City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) committee meeting held last Tuesday (February 7, 2006) confirm that the city of Melbourne did not consider in detail the recommendation contain in the various items of correspondence

6. GENERAL BUSINESS (agenda item 6)

6.1 Response to Correspondence Received by Mr Anthony van der Craats

The Chair referred to the matter previously raised in relation to the correspondence of 4 February 2006 (which incorporated information contained in correspondence dated 24 December 2005) 3rd, 2nd and 1st February 2006 received from Mr Anthony van der Craats. The Chair, Cr Shanahan, moved the following motion: “That the Finance and Corporate Performance Committee note the correspondence and include in quarterly travel reports to Committee a register of in-bound travel funded by Council.” Cr Snedden seconded the motion.

The motion was put and carried unanimously.


Copies of correspondence was circulated to Councillors but the Council in a deliberate attempt of avoidance refused to publish the reports and make them available to the public. WHY?

Committee chairman Councillor Brian Shanahan has failed to provide an explanation. Missing in the documentation and deliberations of the Committee are recommendations for the City of Melbourne to publish expenses related to in-house catering and the cost associated with the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Council funded limousines. Clearly the Council does not want this information made public – what is it the are trying to hide that they go to extraorindary lengths to avoid?

Whilst the City Council has agreed to publish in-bound travel expenses funded by the Council the full costs of in-bound missions will not be disclosed with the cost of travel being a small part of the overall cost of in-bound missions.

Why did the Council agree to publish limited information on in-bound missions but refused to publish travel costs associated the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Limousines and Council’s in-house catering bill?

The City of Melbourne continues to deny the public access to information in what is seen as an ongoing abuse of process.

The public have a right to know the full costs and details of council expenditure. The question that is outstanding is the City of Melbourne still intending to produce a report on the full cost of In-bound Missions and will that report be tabled in an open and public meeting?

Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley in December 2005 moved a motion that the in-bound mission report as requested by Cr Snedden be referred to a secret ‘illegal’ meeting of Council behind closed (Shame Fraser Shame). The holding of secret meetings is contrary to the provisions of the Local Government Act and the principle of open and transparent governance which require that all public documents and deliberations of Council be made in open public meetings.

Whilst it has been noted that Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley has expressed regret in moving the motion in december he never the less has failed to re-address this issue and continues, along with other Councillors, to support the suppression of reports and documents that expose the true cost of governance of the City of Melbourne. Is this the quaility of Governance we can expect form the Greens should they be elected to State Parliament? Given their current performance I do not think they will make it.

The report and recommendations that have been withheld by the City Council outlined a number of concerns related to errors and omissions in the Council’s published data and included recommendations protect the integrity of the Council’s financial registers against possible fraud and deception.

The Council Travel Register in its current form is an electronic whiteboard open to abuse and misuse with staff able to alter, remove or delete information without detection.

The report recommended that Council include a Record Id number (Which is normal professional practice) to assist in the proper audit of the register information and to help prevent misuse, abuse and possible fraud. Previous copies of the Travel Register have been modified to remove undisclosed expenses related to former Councillor Anthony Nicholson’s St Petersburg ‘mid summer’ tour, with $8,000.00 still missing from the published Councillor expense statements.

The City Council continue to avoid accountability as opposed to accepting responsibility by talking action to prevent ongoing misuse and abuse of the Council administration who are engaged in a excerise of cover-up and denial. Until they address the issue in a professional and proper manner the problems identified will not disappear. Advodiance and denial is not the answer.

Tuesday’s Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) committee meeting also failed to publish and consider items of correspondence in relation to item 5.7 “Council’s Long Stay Car Park Levy” and its “Transport policy”.

If the Melbourne City Council can not demonstrate its ability to self-govern and continues to avoided addressing this issue in a proper and responsible manner then the only other alternative is to refer the issue to the State office of the Auditor General and Ombudsman for review and further consideration.

Council’s avoidance and censorship Finance Committee minutes confirms Councillors’ refusal to publish reports that are critical of the Council

Minutes of the City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) committee meeting held last Tuesday (February 7, 2006) confirm that the city of Melbourne did not consider in detail the recommendation contain in the various items of correspondence

6. GENERAL BUSINESS (agenda item 6)

6.1 Response to Correspondence Received by Mr Anthony van der Craats

The Chair referred to the matter previously raised in relation to the correspondence of 4 February 2006 (which incorporated information contained in correspondence dated 24 December 2005) 3rd, 2nd and 1st February 2006 received from Mr Anthony van der Craats. The Chair, Cr Shanahan, moved the following motion: “That the Finance and Corporate Performance Committee note the correspondence and include in quarterly travel reports to Committee a register of in-bound travel funded by Council.” Cr Snedden seconded the motion.

The motion was put and carried unanimously.


Copies of correspondence was circulated to Councillors but the Council in a deliberate attempt of avoidance refused to publish the reports and make them available to the public. WHY?

Committee chairman Councillor Brian Shanahan has failed to provide an explanation. Missing in the documentation and deliberations of the Committee are recommendations for the City of Melbourne to publish expenses related to in-house catering and the cost associated with the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Council funded limousines. Clearly the Council does not want this information made public – what is it the are trying to hide that they go to extraorindary lengths to avoid?

Whilst the City Council has agreed to publish in-bound travel expenses funded by the Council the full costs of in-bound missions will not be disclosed with the cost of travel being a small part of the overall cost of in-bound missions.

Why did the Council agree to publish limited information on in-bound missions but refused to publish travel costs associated the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Limousines and Council’s in-house catering bill?

The City of Melbourne continues to deny the public access to information in what is seen as an ongoing abuse of process.

The public have a right to know the full costs and details of council expenditure. The question that is outstanding is the City of Melbourne still intending to produce a report on the full cost of In-bound Missions and will that report be tabled in an open and public meeting?

Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley in December 2005 moved a motion that the in-bound mission report as requested by Cr Snedden be referred to a secret ‘illegal’ meeting of Council behind closed (Shame Fraser Shame). The holding of secret meetings is contrary to the provisions of the Local Government Act and the principle of open and transparent governance which require that all public documents and deliberations of Council be made in open public meetings.

Whilst it has been noted that Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley has expressed regret in moving the motion in december he never the less has failed to re-address this issue and continues, along with other Councillors, to support the suppression of reports and documents that expose the true cost of governance of the City of Melbourne. Is this the quaility of Governance we can expect form the Greens should they be elected to State Parliament? Given their current performance I do not think they will make it.

The report and recommendations that have been withheld by the City Council outlined a number of concerns related to errors and omissions in the Council’s published data and included recommendations protect the integrity of the Council’s financial registers against possible fraud and deception.

The Council Travel Register in its current form is an electronic whiteboard open to abuse and misuse with staff able to alter, remove or delete information without detection.

The report recommended that Council include a Record Id number (Which is normal professional practice) to assist in the proper audit of the register information and to help prevent misuse, abuse and possible fraud. Previous copies of the Travel Register have been modified to remove undisclosed expenses related to former Councillor Anthony Nicholson’s St Petersburg ‘mid summer’ tour, with $8,000.00 still missing from the published Councillor expense statements.

The City Council continue to avoid accountability as opposed to accepting responsibility by talking action to prevent ongoing misuse and abuse of the Council administration who are engaged in a excerise of cover-up and denial. Until they address the issue in a professional and proper manner the problems identified will not disappear. Advodiance and denial is not the answer.

Tuesday’s Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) committee meeting also failed to publish and consider items of correspondence in relation to item 5.7 “Council’s Long Stay Car Park Levy” and its “Transport policy”.

If the Melbourne City Council can not demonstrate its ability to self-govern and continues to avoided addressing this issue in a proper and responsible manner then the only other alternative is to refer the issue to the State office of the Auditor General and Ombudsman for review and further consideration.

Council’s avoidance and censorship Finance Committee minutes confirms Councillors’ refusal to publish reports that are critical of the Council

Minutes of the City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) committee meeting held last Tuesday (February 7, 2006) confirm that the city of Melbourne did not consider in detail the recommendation contain in the various items of correspondence

6. GENERAL BUSINESS (agenda item 6)

6.1 Response to Correspondence Received by Mr Anthony van der Craats

The Chair referred to the matter previously raised in relation to the correspondence of 4 February 2006 (which incorporated information contained in correspondence dated 24 December 2005) 3rd, 2nd and 1st February 2006 received from Mr Anthony van der Craats. The Chair, Cr Shanahan, moved the following motion: “That the Finance and Corporate Performance Committee note the correspondence and include in quarterly travel reports to Committee a register of in-bound travel funded by Council.” Cr Snedden seconded the motion.

The motion was put and carried unanimously.


Copies of correspondence was circulated to Councillors but the Council in a deliberate attempt of avoidance refused to publish the reports and make them available to the public. WHY?

Committee chairman Councillor Brian Shanahan has failed to provide an explanation. Missing in the documentation and deliberations of the Committee are recommendations for the City of Melbourne to publish expenses related to in-house catering and the cost associated with the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Council funded limousines. Clearly the Council does not want this information made public – what is it the are trying to hide that they go to extraorindary lengths to avoid?

Whilst the City Council has agreed to publish in-bound travel expenses funded by the Council the full costs of in-bound missions will not be disclosed with the cost of travel being a small part of the overall cost of in-bound missions.

Why did the Council agree to publish limited information on in-bound missions but refused to publish travel costs associated the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s Limousines and Council’s in-house catering bill?

The City of Melbourne continues to deny the public access to information in what is seen as an ongoing abuse of process.

The public have a right to know the full costs and details of council expenditure. The question that is outstanding is the City of Melbourne still intending to produce a report on the full cost of In-bound Missions and will that report be tabled in an open and public meeting?

Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley in December 2005 moved a motion that the in-bound mission report as requested by Cr Snedden be referred to a secret ‘illegal’ meeting of Council behind closed (Shame Fraser Shame). The holding of secret meetings is contrary to the provisions of the Local Government Act and the principle of open and transparent governance which require that all public documents and deliberations of Council be made in open public meetings.

Whilst it has been noted that Greens Councillor Fraser Brindley has expressed regret in moving the motion in december he never the less has failed to re-address this issue and continues, along with other Councillors, to support the suppression of reports and documents that expose the true cost of governance of the City of Melbourne. Is this the quaility of Governance we can expect form the Greens should they be elected to State Parliament? Given their current performance I do not think they will make it.

The report and recommendations that have been withheld by the City Council outlined a number of concerns related to errors and omissions in the Council’s published data and included recommendations protect the integrity of the Council’s financial registers against possible fraud and deception.

The Council Travel Register in its current form is an electronic whiteboard open to abuse and misuse with staff able to alter, remove or delete information without detection.

The report recommended that Council include a Record Id number (Which is normal professional practice) to assist in the proper audit of the register information and to help prevent misuse, abuse and possible fraud. Previous copies of the Travel Register have been modified to remove undisclosed expenses related to former Councillor Anthony Nicholson’s St Petersburg ‘mid summer’ tour, with $8,000.00 still missing from the published Councillor expense statements.

The City Council continue to avoid accountability as opposed to accepting responsibility by talking action to prevent ongoing misuse and abuse of the Council administration who are engaged in a excerise of cover-up and denial. Until they address the issue in a professional and proper manner the problems identified will not disappear. Advodiance and denial is not the answer.

Tuesday’s Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) committee meeting also failed to publish and consider items of correspondence in relation to item 5.7 “Council’s Long Stay Car Park Levy” and its “Transport policy”.

If the Melbourne City Council can not demonstrate its ability to self-govern and continues to avoided addressing this issue in a proper and responsible manner then the only other alternative is to refer the issue to the State office of the Auditor General and Ombudsman for review and further consideration.

Democracy dead and buried Melbourne City Council censorship on public submissions seeking disclosure of Councilor’s expenses

Open and Transparent Governance in Melbourne is non-existent with the City Council going to extraordinary steps to avoid accountability and responsibility.

The City Council has now embarked on an act of censorship by refusing to publish reports and public submissions that are critical of the Council’s administration and governance.

The City of Melbourne administration with the consent of Cr Brian Shanahan, Chairman of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee, failed to publish a submission presented to the Council concerning Council expenses and correspondence criticising the Council’s recently published transport policy.

The Melbourne City Council has abandoned its duty and responsibility to maintain an open and transparent system of governance.

First there was the decision of Council moved by Greens Councillor Fraser Bindley to deny public access to documents outlining the cost of inbound missions (hosting of overseas visitors) by referring a report to be considered by the Council behind closed doors at a secret meeting, now the City of Melbourne goes one step further by imposing censorship on public submissions.

This unjustified act of censorship is outrageous and corrupt.

Council clearly do not want to be held accountable and are now prepared to go to the extraordinary efforts of censorship to avoid disclosure of their expenses and criticism of the Council’s administration.

Council has a duty and obligation to consider these issues

The report and submission to Council made a number of recommendations including a request that information on the costs of the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayors Limousines be included in the Councillor’s expense statements . Currently these costs are excluded from the Councillors expense statements which are false and misleading, the public have a right to know the full extent of costs and subsidies paid to Councillors.

The City Council and chairman have closed ranks and have demonstrated their continuing abuse of process and administration.

The submission was listed for discussion on the Council’s agenda but the Council failed to publish the content of the submission or consider in detail the recommendations. (copy available here). The report was a follow up and response to information disclosed following the publication of the council’s Travel Register outlining cost associated with Councils overseas and interstate Travel.

Normally all reports and submissions to be considered by the Council are published with the Council’s agenda and made available to the public but on this occasion the Council refused to publish the associated documents or make them available at the public meeting held yesterday.

“A lack of openness, transparency, information and insufficient accountability creates the conditions in which corruption flourishes”

No explanation provided.

A letter requesting an explanation and the reasons for Council’s failure to publish the documents listed on the agenda was forwarded to Cr Shanahan last Friday.

Council on Tuesday noted the report, which was not made available to the public, the council also failed to consider in detail the recommendations and issues raised. There are serious issues that continue to go unaddressed. Council administration, who were the subject of criticism in the report, falsely claimed that the report was defamatory.

Clearly the Council has something to hide and does not want the public to know

Democracy dead and buried Melbourne City Council censorship on public submissions seeking disclosure of Councilor’s expenses

Open and Transparent Governance in Melbourne is non-existent with the City Council going to extraordinary steps to avoid accountability and responsibility.

The City Council has now embarked on an act of censorship by refusing to publish reports and public submissions that are critical of the Council’s administration and governance.

The City of Melbourne administration with the consent of Cr Brian Shanahan, Chairman of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee, failed to publish a submission presented to the Council concerning Council expenses and correspondence criticising the Council’s recently published transport policy.

The Melbourne City Council has abandoned its duty and responsibility to maintain an open and transparent system of governance.

First there was the decision of Council moved by Greens Councillor Fraser Bindley to deny public access to documents outlining the cost of inbound missions (hosting of overseas visitors) by referring a report to be considered by the Council behind closed doors at a secret meeting, now the City of Melbourne goes one step further by imposing censorship on public submissions.

This unjustified act of censorship is outrageous and corrupt.

Council clearly do not want to be held accountable and are now prepared to go to the extraordinary efforts of censorship to avoid disclosure of their expenses and criticism of the Council’s administration.

Council has a duty and obligation to consider these issues

The report and submission to Council made a number of recommendations including a request that information on the costs of the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayors Limousines be included in the Councillor’s expense statements . Currently these costs are excluded from the Councillors expense statements which are false and misleading, the public have a right to know the full extent of costs and subsidies paid to Councillors.

The City Council and chairman have closed ranks and have demonstrated their continuing abuse of process and administration.

The submission was listed for discussion on the Council’s agenda but the Council failed to publish the content of the submission or consider in detail the recommendations. (copy available here). The report was a follow up and response to information disclosed following the publication of the council’s Travel Register outlining cost associated with Councils overseas and interstate Travel.

Normally all reports and submissions to be considered by the Council are published with the Council’s agenda and made available to the public but on this occasion the Council refused to publish the associated documents or make them available at the public meeting held yesterday.

“A lack of openness, transparency, information and insufficient accountability creates the conditions in which corruption flourishes”

No explanation provided.

A letter requesting an explanation and the reasons for Council’s failure to publish the documents listed on the agenda was forwarded to Cr Shanahan last Friday.

Council on Tuesday noted the report, which was not made available to the public, the council also failed to consider in detail the recommendations and issues raised. There are serious issues that continue to go unaddressed. Council administration, who were the subject of criticism in the report, falsely claimed that the report was defamatory.

Clearly the Council has something to hide and does not want the public to know

Democracy dead and buried Melbourne City Council censorship on public submissions seeking disclosure of Councilor’s expenses

Open and Transparent Governance in Melbourne is non-existent with the City Council going to extraordinary steps to avoid accountability and responsibility.

The City Council has now embarked on an act of censorship by refusing to publish reports and public submissions that are critical of the Council’s administration and governance.

The City of Melbourne administration with the consent of Cr Brian Shanahan, Chairman of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee, failed to publish a submission presented to the Council concerning Council expenses and correspondence criticising the Council’s recently published transport policy.

The Melbourne City Council has abandoned its duty and responsibility to maintain an open and transparent system of governance.

First there was the decision of Council moved by Greens Councillor Fraser Bindley to deny public access to documents outlining the cost of inbound missions (hosting of overseas visitors) by referring a report to be considered by the Council behind closed doors at a secret meeting, now the City of Melbourne goes one step further by imposing censorship on public submissions.

This unjustified act of censorship is outrageous and corrupt.

Council clearly do not want to be held accountable and are now prepared to go to the extraordinary efforts of censorship to avoid disclosure of their expenses and criticism of the Council’s administration.

Council has a duty and obligation to consider these issues

The report and submission to Council made a number of recommendations including a request that information on the costs of the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayors Limousines be included in the Councillor’s expense statements . Currently these costs are excluded from the Councillors expense statements which are false and misleading, the public have a right to know the full extent of costs and subsidies paid to Councillors.

The City Council and chairman have closed ranks and have demonstrated their continuing abuse of process and administration.

The submission was listed for discussion on the Council’s agenda but the Council failed to publish the content of the submission or consider in detail the recommendations. (copy available here). The report was a follow up and response to information disclosed following the publication of the council’s Travel Register outlining cost associated with Councils overseas and interstate Travel.

Normally all reports and submissions to be considered by the Council are published with the Council’s agenda and made available to the public but on this occasion the Council refused to publish the associated documents or make them available at the public meeting held yesterday.

“A lack of openness, transparency, information and insufficient accountability creates the conditions in which corruption flourishes”

No explanation provided.

A letter requesting an explanation and the reasons for Council’s failure to publish the documents listed on the agenda was forwarded to Cr Shanahan last Friday.

Council on Tuesday noted the report, which was not made available to the public, the council also failed to consider in detail the recommendations and issues raised. There are serious issues that continue to go unaddressed. Council administration, who were the subject of criticism in the report, falsely claimed that the report was defamatory.

Clearly the Council has something to hide and does not want the public to know

Tuesday’s missing report Item 6.1 City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance Committee Meeting – Tuesday February 7, 2006

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Please find attached a copy information recently published on the City of Melbourne -Holding them to account blog http://melbournecouncil.blogspot.com

I wish to express concern that the Council administration had failed to publish a copy of my submission dated December 24, 2005 or a copy of any report pertaining to item 6.1 listed in the agenda for next Tuesday’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting.

How can the public know what matters are being discussed by the committee if the administration withhold
information?

Can you please publish and consider the attached article in association with item 6.1 and include a copy in the minutes of the meeting.

Yours sincerely

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com



Tuesday’s missing report: Item 6.1 City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance Committee Meeting – Tuesday February 7, 2006

Response to our letter dated December 24, 2005

The City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) first meeting for the year meeting is on next Tuesday February 7, 2006

Missing from the agenda/reports is the response to my letter dated December 24th, 2005. ( I wonder why the response and a copy of my original letter was not included in the committee papers?). (More abuse and mismanagement). How can I or members of the public respond or make a submission if we are kept in the dark as to the Council response or what was asked of them?

For the record I have reprinted below the contents of the letter under discussion? We have since forwarded more items of correspondence on this topic which also has not been listed.

The letter sent in December raises a number of issues related to the publication of the Council’s Travel Register and issues related to Council expenses. Such as the need to ensure that the Travel Register contains a Record ID number so as to assist in the audit of the Travel Register and avoid any misuse and wrong doing such as unauthorised removal or alteration of information previously recorded.

The Council’s Travel Register is effectively an Electronic Whiteboard. Previously, before the days of the electronic media, the Council’s Travel Register was written and recorded in a bound book. The new Travel Register is in the form of an excel spreadsheet print-out.


Our letter also expresses concern about the decision of the Council late last year to hold illegal behind closed door meetings. Councillor Fraser Brindley moved a motion that information related to the cost and expense of Council’s in-bound missions be presented to a closed information briefing session as opposed to being tabled at an open Council committee meeting. So much for honouring the Greens’ election pledge

“The Greens support the integrity of local government as an independent
level of government enabling full and active participation of the community
in governance of issues at the local level. Such governance should embrace
open and consultative decision – making, and provide for clear reporting of
Council’s activities.” – November 2004

(Shame Fraser Shame)

This is one of the most offensive actions I have seen the Council do in a long time – and I have seen many offensive and highly questionable things done by the City of Melbourne – like the time they held a committee meeting to discuss the development of Federation Square and when myself and the media turned up to attend the meeting Cr Peter (McClown) McMullin quickly cancelled the meeting and held a private discussion instead. Alison Lyon’s, Councils Legal Officer, failed to mention that the Local Government act requires all meeting of Council to be open to the scrutiny of the public. (Section 89)

It seams that the Council administration forget that they have a public responsibility and that meetings of Council are
supposed to be open and accessible to the public.

The Public have a right to know information related to the costs of Council’s expenditure.

The original motion proposed by Cr. Fiona Snedden requested a report be tabled on the costs of Council’s inbound missions. We congratulate Cr Snedden in requesting this information but we think this information should be made public and not just presented to Councillors in closed session at illegal meetings and our letter requests that this information be tabled at the March Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) meeting.

In addition we have requested that the costs of internal catering per department per month be and available
including a breakdown of costs involved in the supply of alcohol. We understand that such a report already exists but is never tabled at Council meetings.

We have also requested that the costs associated with the lord Mayor and deputy Lord Mayor’s limousine be included and recorded in the Councillor expense statements (under the item Local Travel). It is wrong and misleading for the expense statements to not include this information. We would also like to know how much fuel is being consumed and hope that the costs also include the cost of free inner city parking at Town Hall.

Given that the City of Melbourne has recently resolved to make Melbourne a “car free city” we think they should start
by scraping the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s limousines.

(Note to Fraser Brindley: Please read the Greens’ Policy Statement and commitment to the electorate. We are looking forward to you taking action to fulfil you election promises and scrap the Lord Mayor’s car and driver. Whilst you are at it remove Council funded vehicles or lease agreements from any remunerations package offered to staff including free car-parking in the Council car park – after all we want a car free city – no?)

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com

– – Copy of missing letter dated December 24 —

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Please find attached the latest posting on the “Melbourne City Council – holding them to account” blog for your information. http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com I request that this letter along with the content printed below be referred to the next meeting of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee for listing and consideration.

In addition I request that the next meeting of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee consider the following recommendations:

1. Council in-bound missions Council review it decision to refer documents of management pertaining to council expenses on in-bound missions to the closed unofficial Councillor Information Exchange Session and that the management report detailing the expenses of in-bound missions be tabled in open session of the City of Melbourne’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee. held in March 2006

2. Publication of the Council’s Travel register

Council review its decision to publish the Council’s Travel register on its internet site on a quarterly basis and recommend that Council publish the Travel register within 24 hours of any addition or update to the register.

further that

2.1 the Travel register be amended to include a record id number for each entry so as to assist in the identification and audit of the register to minimise any fraud, deletion or omission.

2.2 the Travel register include a break down of costs outlining the cost of travel, accommodation, conference fees and sundry expenses along with the allocated budget and reference to the instrument of authorisation approving the travel undertaken.

2.3 the Travel register in fulfilment to the Council’s commitment of maintaining a sustainable environment include a
tabulated record of the estimated amount of Co2 emissions generated as a result of the travel undertaken by Council staff and Councillors. This information can ascertained by using a Co2 calculator readily available on the internet. such as Sustainable Travel International
https://www.myclimate.co.uk/STI/op_carbonoffsets_offset.html

3. Cost of in-house catering report

That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting in March 2006 detailing in-house catering expenses for each department since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4. Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayors Local travel expenses

4.1 That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting in March 2006 detailing the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Lord Mayor’s Limousine (including the salary of the Lord Mayor’s driver) along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4.2 That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance
committee meeting in March 2006 detailing the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Deputy’s Lord Mayor’s vehicle with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4.3 That the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Lord Mayor’s
Limousine (including the salary of the Lord Mayor’s driver) along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 be listed and recorded in the published Councillor expense statements under the category of local travel.

4.4 That the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption and the Deputy Lord Mayor’s vehicle provided by the City of Melbourne along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 be listed and recorded in the published Councillor expense statements under the category of local travel.

Should you require further information I can be contacted via return email

Yours faithfully

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com

Tuesday’s missing report Item 6.1 City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance Committee Meeting – Tuesday February 7, 2006

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Please find attached a copy information recently published on the City of Melbourne -Holding them to account blog http://melbournecouncil.blogspot.com

I wish to express concern that the Council administration had failed to publish a copy of my submission dated December 24, 2005 or a copy of any report pertaining to item 6.1 listed in the agenda for next Tuesday’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting.

How can the public know what matters are being discussed by the committee if the administration withhold
information?

Can you please publish and consider the attached article in association with item 6.1 and include a copy in the minutes of the meeting.

Yours sincerely

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com



Tuesday’s missing report: Item 6.1 City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance Committee Meeting – Tuesday February 7, 2006

Response to our letter dated December 24, 2005

The City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) first meeting for the year meeting is on next Tuesday February 7, 2006

Missing from the agenda/reports is the response to my letter dated December 24th, 2005. ( I wonder why the response and a copy of my original letter was not included in the committee papers?). (More abuse and mismanagement). How can I or members of the public respond or make a submission if we are kept in the dark as to the Council response or what was asked of them?

For the record I have reprinted below the contents of the letter under discussion? We have since forwarded more items of correspondence on this topic which also has not been listed.

The letter sent in December raises a number of issues related to the publication of the Council’s Travel Register and issues related to Council expenses. Such as the need to ensure that the Travel Register contains a Record ID number so as to assist in the audit of the Travel Register and avoid any misuse and wrong doing such as unauthorised removal or alteration of information previously recorded.

The Council’s Travel Register is effectively an Electronic Whiteboard. Previously, before the days of the electronic media, the Council’s Travel Register was written and recorded in a bound book. The new Travel Register is in the form of an excel spreadsheet print-out.


Our letter also expresses concern about the decision of the Council late last year to hold illegal behind closed door meetings. Councillor Fraser Brindley moved a motion that information related to the cost and expense of Council’s in-bound missions be presented to a closed information briefing session as opposed to being tabled at an open Council committee meeting. So much for honouring the Greens’ election pledge

“The Greens support the integrity of local government as an independent
level of government enabling full and active participation of the community
in governance of issues at the local level. Such governance should embrace
open and consultative decision – making, and provide for clear reporting of
Council’s activities.” – November 2004

(Shame Fraser Shame)

This is one of the most offensive actions I have seen the Council do in a long time – and I have seen many offensive and highly questionable things done by the City of Melbourne – like the time they held a committee meeting to discuss the development of Federation Square and when myself and the media turned up to attend the meeting Cr Peter (McClown) McMullin quickly cancelled the meeting and held a private discussion instead. Alison Lyon’s, Councils Legal Officer, failed to mention that the Local Government act requires all meeting of Council to be open to the scrutiny of the public. (Section 89)

It seams that the Council administration forget that they have a public responsibility and that meetings of Council are
supposed to be open and accessible to the public.

The Public have a right to know information related to the costs of Council’s expenditure.

The original motion proposed by Cr. Fiona Snedden requested a report be tabled on the costs of Council’s inbound missions. We congratulate Cr Snedden in requesting this information but we think this information should be made public and not just presented to Councillors in closed session at illegal meetings and our letter requests that this information be tabled at the March Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) meeting.

In addition we have requested that the costs of internal catering per department per month be and available
including a breakdown of costs involved in the supply of alcohol. We understand that such a report already exists but is never tabled at Council meetings.

We have also requested that the costs associated with the lord Mayor and deputy Lord Mayor’s limousine be included and recorded in the Councillor expense statements (under the item Local Travel). It is wrong and misleading for the expense statements to not include this information. We would also like to know how much fuel is being consumed and hope that the costs also include the cost of free inner city parking at Town Hall.

Given that the City of Melbourne has recently resolved to make Melbourne a “car free city” we think they should start
by scraping the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s limousines.

(Note to Fraser Brindley: Please read the Greens’ Policy Statement and commitment to the electorate. We are looking forward to you taking action to fulfil you election promises and scrap the Lord Mayor’s car and driver. Whilst you are at it remove Council funded vehicles or lease agreements from any remunerations package offered to staff including free car-parking in the Council car park – after all we want a car free city – no?)

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com


– – Copy of missing letter dated December 24 —

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Please find attached the latest posting on the “Melbourne City Council – holding them to account” blog for your information. http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com I request that this letter along with the content printed below be referred to the next meeting of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee for listing and consideration.

In addition I request that the next meeting of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee consider the following recommendations:

1. Council in-bound missions Council review it decision to refer documents of management pertaining to council expenses on in-bound missions to the closed unofficial Councillor Information Exchange Session and that the management report detailing the expenses of in-bound missions be tabled in open session of the City of Melbourne’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee. held in March 2006

2. Publication of the Council’s Travel register

Council review its decision to publish the Council’s Travel register on its internet site on a quarterly basis and recommend that Council publish the Travel register within 24 hours of any addition or update to the register.

further that

2.1 the Travel register be amended to include a record id number for each entry so as to assist in the identification and audit of the register to minimise any fraud, deletion or omission.

2.2 the Travel register include a break down of costs outlining the cost of travel, accommodation, conference fees and sundry expenses along with the allocated budget and reference to the instrument of authorisation approving the travel undertaken.

2.3 the Travel register in fulfilment to the Council’s commitment of maintaining a sustainable environment include a
tabulated record of the estimated amount of Co2 emissions generated as a result of the travel undertaken by Council staff and Councillors. This information can ascertained by using a Co2 calculator readily available on the internet. such as Sustainable Travel International
https://www.myclimate.co.uk/STI/op_carbonoffsets_offset.html

3. Cost of in-house catering report

That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting in March 2006 detailing in-house catering expenses for each department since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4. Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayors Local travel expenses

4.1 That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting in March 2006 detailing the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Lord Mayor’s Limousine (including the salary of the Lord Mayor’s driver) along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4.2 That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance
committee meeting in March 2006 detailing the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Deputy’s Lord Mayor’s vehicle with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4.3 That the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Lord Mayor’s
Limousine (including the salary of the Lord Mayor’s driver) along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 be listed and recorded in the published Councillor expense statements under the category of local travel.

4.4 That the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption and the Deputy Lord Mayor’s vehicle provided by the City of Melbourne along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 be listed and recorded in the published Councillor expense statements under the category of local travel.

Should you require further information I can be contacted via return email

Yours faithfully

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com

Tuesday’s missing report Item 6.1 City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance Committee Meeting – Tuesday February 7, 2006

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Please find attached a copy information recently published on the City of Melbourne -Holding them to account blog http://melbournecouncil.blogspot.com

I wish to express concern that the Council administration had failed to publish a copy of my submission dated December 24, 2005 or a copy of any report pertaining to item 6.1 listed in the agenda for next Tuesday’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting.

How can the public know what matters are being discussed by the committee if the administration withhold
information?

Can you please publish and consider the attached article in association with item 6.1 and include a copy in the minutes of the meeting.

Yours sincerely

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com



Tuesday’s missing report: Item 6.1 City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance Committee Meeting – Tuesday February 7, 2006

Response to our letter dated December 24, 2005

The City of Melbourne Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) first meeting for the year meeting is on next Tuesday February 7, 2006

Missing from the agenda/reports is the response to my letter dated December 24th, 2005. ( I wonder why the response and a copy of my original letter was not included in the committee papers?). (More abuse and mismanagement). How can I or members of the public respond or make a submission if we are kept in the dark as to the Council response or what was asked of them?

For the record I have reprinted below the contents of the letter under discussion? We have since forwarded more items of correspondence on this topic which also has not been listed.

The letter sent in December raises a number of issues related to the publication of the Council’s Travel Register and issues related to Council expenses. Such as the need to ensure that the Travel Register contains a Record ID number so as to assist in the audit of the Travel Register and avoid any misuse and wrong doing such as unauthorised removal or alteration of information previously recorded.

The Council’s Travel Register is effectively an Electronic Whiteboard. Previously, before the days of the electronic media, the Council’s Travel Register was written and recorded in a bound book. The new Travel Register is in the form of an excel spreadsheet print-out.


Our letter also expresses concern about the decision of the Council late last year to hold illegal behind closed door meetings. Councillor Fraser Brindley moved a motion that information related to the cost and expense of Council’s in-bound missions be presented to a closed information briefing session as opposed to being tabled at an open Council committee meeting. So much for honouring the Greens’ election pledge

“The Greens support the integrity of local government as an independent
level of government enabling full and active participation of the community
in governance of issues at the local level. Such governance should embrace
open and consultative decision – making, and provide for clear reporting of
Council’s activities.” – November 2004

(Shame Fraser Shame)

This is one of the most offensive actions I have seen the Council do in a long time – and I have seen many offensive and highly questionable things done by the City of Melbourne – like the time they held a committee meeting to discuss the development of Federation Square and when myself and the media turned up to attend the meeting Cr Peter (McClown) McMullin quickly cancelled the meeting and held a private discussion instead. Alison Lyon’s, Councils Legal Officer, failed to mention that the Local Government act requires all meeting of Council to be open to the scrutiny of the public. (Section 89)

It seams that the Council administration forget that they have a public responsibility and that meetings of Council are
supposed to be open and accessible to the public.

The Public have a right to know information related to the costs of Council’s expenditure.

The original motion proposed by Cr. Fiona Snedden requested a report be tabled on the costs of Council’s inbound missions. We congratulate Cr Snedden in requesting this information but we think this information should be made public and not just presented to Councillors in closed session at illegal meetings and our letter requests that this information be tabled at the March Finance and Corporate Performance (sic) meeting.

In addition we have requested that the costs of internal catering per department per month be and available
including a breakdown of costs involved in the supply of alcohol. We understand that such a report already exists but is never tabled at Council meetings.

We have also requested that the costs associated with the lord Mayor and deputy Lord Mayor’s limousine be included and recorded in the Councillor expense statements (under the item Local Travel). It is wrong and misleading for the expense statements to not include this information. We would also like to know how much fuel is being consumed and hope that the costs also include the cost of free inner city parking at Town Hall.

Given that the City of Melbourne has recently resolved to make Melbourne a “car free city” we think they should start
by scraping the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor’s limousines.

(Note to Fraser Brindley: Please read the Greens’ Policy Statement and commitment to the electorate. We are looking forward to you taking action to fulfil you election promises and scrap the Lord Mayor’s car and driver. Whilst you are at it remove Council funded vehicles or lease agreements from any remunerations package offered to staff including free car-parking in the Council car park – after all we want a car free city – no?)

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com


– – Copy of missing letter dated December 24 —

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Please find attached the latest posting on the “Melbourne City Council – holding them to account” blog for your information. http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com I request that this letter along with the content printed below be referred to the next meeting of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee for listing and consideration.

In addition I request that the next meeting of the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance Committee consider the following recommendations:

1. Council in-bound missions Council review it decision to refer documents of management pertaining to council expenses on in-bound missions to the closed unofficial Councillor Information Exchange Session and that the management report detailing the expenses of in-bound missions be tabled in open session of the City of Melbourne’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee. held in March 2006

2. Publication of the Council’s Travel register

Council review its decision to publish the Council’s Travel register on its internet site on a quarterly basis and recommend that Council publish the Travel register within 24 hours of any addition or update to the register.

further that

2.1 the Travel register be amended to include a record id number for each entry so as to assist in the identification and audit of the register to minimise any fraud, deletion or omission.

2.2 the Travel register include a break down of costs outlining the cost of travel, accommodation, conference fees and sundry expenses along with the allocated budget and reference to the instrument of authorisation approving the travel undertaken.

2.3 the Travel register in fulfilment to the Council’s commitment of maintaining a sustainable environment include a
tabulated record of the estimated amount of Co2 emissions generated as a result of the travel undertaken by Council staff and Councillors. This information can ascertained by using a Co2 calculator readily available on the internet. such as Sustainable Travel International
https://www.myclimate.co.uk/STI/op_carbonoffsets_offset.html

3. Cost of in-house catering report

That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting in March 2006 detailing in-house catering expenses for each department since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4. Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayors Local travel expenses

4.1 That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance committee meeting in March 2006 detailing the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Lord Mayor’s Limousine (including the salary of the Lord Mayor’s driver) along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4.2 That a report be tabled in open public session at the Council’s Finance and Corporate Performance
committee meeting in March 2006 detailing the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Deputy’s Lord Mayor’s vehicle with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 to March 1, 2006

4.3 That the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption of the Lord Mayor’s
Limousine (including the salary of the Lord Mayor’s driver) along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 be listed and recorded in the published Councillor expense statements under the category of local travel.

4.4 That the costs associated with the lease, depreciation, maintenance, petrol consumption and the Deputy Lord Mayor’s vehicle provided by the City of Melbourne along with any other local travel expenses paid for by the City Council since December 1 2004 be listed and recorded in the published Councillor expense statements under the category of local travel.

Should you require further information I can be contacted via return email

Yours faithfully

Anthony van der Craats
http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com

Report on the publication and management of the City of Melbourne’s Travel Register

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Dear Councillors

Report on the publication and management of the City of Melbourne’s Travel Register

This report shows that the City of Melbourne has spent close to $400,000 in the past year on overseas and intestate travel exceeding the previous record of the cost of last years travel – No budgets not constraints.

The Travel Register is a public document and should be readily available for public inspection and scrutiny with publication on the Council’s Internet site being an efficient and cost effective means of providing public access to public documents.

The associated costs and extent of avoidance and effort undertaken by the City Council administration to prevent the publication of this information is extraordinary. The estimated costs of the Council administration’s avoidance mounts into the several 10’s of thousands of dollars. It should have costed the Council nothing as this information is already required to be maintained and available to the public.

Comments

The Council’s Travel Register is poorly managed

Data quality recorded on the Council’s Travel Register was poor with double-entries, incorrect dates and inconsistent data recorded.

The design of the Travel Register is akin to an Electronic Whiteboard with data readily modified or deleted with no accountability or proper records. Without a sequential Record ID it is virtually impossible to audited or provide reassurance that information has not been unduly altered or removed.

Recommendations

The Council should review the management of its register with responsibility for maintaining this information removed from the Governance section and handed over to the Financial Accounts department.

Consideration should be given to recording register information in a database as opposed to a spreadsheet. This would allow for more secure design and more efficient management and reporting. This could be undertaken in house utilising existing staff resources and technology.

Council needs to set a budget of overseas travel for each department and for each trip. The allocated budget should be listed in the travel report and recorded on the Travel Register.

The name and date of authorisation of any overseas and interstate travel should be recorded on the register. This is currently done as a notation in relation to Councillor’s travel but it could be better designed and managed.

Regular summary reports should be tabled at the Council’s Finance Corporate Performance Committee Meetings
The Travel Register should provide a break down of costs (Accommodation, Travel, Communication, Conference Fees and sundry)

The Travel Register should be published on the Councils internet site within 24 hours of any updates, changes, or additions to the register.

I request that this report be tabled and considered at the next Council’s Finance and Corporate Services Performance meeting.

Further that Council adopt a policy to ensure that all public documents are accessible and published on the Council’s Internet site.

Should you require further Information I can be contacted via return email

Yours faithfully

Anthony van der Craats

http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com




Report on the publication and management of the City of Melbourne’s Travel Register

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Dear Councillors

Report on the publication and management of the City of Melbourne’s Travel Register

This report shows that the City of Melbourne has spent close to $400,000 in the past year on overseas and intestate travel exceeding the previous record of the cost of last years travel – No budgets not constraints.

The Travel Register is a public document and should be readily available for public inspection and scrutiny with publication on the Council’s Internet site being an efficient and cost effective means of providing public access to public documents.

The associated costs and extent of avoidance and effort undertaken by the City Council administration to prevent the publication of this information is extraordinary. The estimated costs of the Council administration’s avoidance mounts into the several 10’s of thousands of dollars. It should have costed the Council nothing as this information is already required to be maintained and available to the public.

Comments

The Council’s Travel Register is poorly managed

Data quality recorded on the Council’s Travel Register was poor with double-entries, incorrect dates and inconsistent data recorded.

The design of the Travel Register is akin to an Electronic Whiteboard with data readily modified or deleted with no accountability or proper records. Without a sequential Record ID it is virtually impossible to audited or provide reassurance that information has not been unduly altered or removed.

Recommendations

The Council should review the management of its register with responsibility for maintaining this information removed from the Governance section and handed over to the Financial Accounts department.

Consideration should be given to recording register information in a database as opposed to a spreadsheet. This would allow for more secure design and more efficient management and reporting. This could be undertaken in house utilising existing staff resources and technology.

Council needs to set a budget of overseas travel for each department and for each trip. The allocated budget should be listed in the travel report and recorded on the Travel Register.

The name and date of authorisation of any overseas and interstate travel should be recorded on the register. This is currently done as a notation in relation to Councillor’s travel but it could be better designed and managed.

Regular summary reports should be tabled at the Council’s Finance Corporate Performance Committee Meetings
The Travel Register should provide a break down of costs (Accommodation, Travel, Communication, Conference Fees and sundry)

The Travel Register should be published on the Councils internet site within 24 hours of any updates, changes, or additions to the register.

I request that this report be tabled and considered at the next Council’s Finance and Corporate Services Performance meeting.

Further that Council adopt a policy to ensure that all public documents are accessible and published on the Council’s Internet site.

Should you require further Information I can be contacted via return email

Yours faithfully

Anthony van der Craats

http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com




Report on the publication and management of the City of Melbourne’s Travel Register

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne

Dear Councillors

Report on the publication and management of the City of Melbourne’s Travel Register

This report shows that the City of Melbourne has spent close to $400,000 in the past year on overseas and intestate travel exceeding the previous record of the cost of last years travel – No budgets not constraints.

The Travel Register is a public document and should be readily available for public inspection and scrutiny with publication on the Council’s Internet site being an efficient and cost effective means of providing public access to public documents.

The associated costs and extent of avoidance and effort undertaken by the City Council administration to prevent the publication of this information is extraordinary. The estimated costs of the Council administration’s avoidance mounts into the several 10’s of thousands of dollars. It should have costed the Council nothing as this information is already required to be maintained and available to the public.

Comments

The Council’s Travel Register is poorly managed

Data quality recorded on the Council’s Travel Register was poor with double-entries, incorrect dates and inconsistent data recorded.

The design of the Travel Register is akin to an Electronic Whiteboard with data readily modified or deleted with no accountability or proper records. Without a sequential Record ID it is virtually impossible to audited or provide reassurance that information has not been unduly altered or removed.

Recommendations

The Council should review the management of its register with responsibility for maintaining this information removed from the Governance section and handed over to the Financial Accounts department.

Consideration should be given to recording register information in a database as opposed to a spreadsheet. This would allow for more secure design and more efficient management and reporting. This could be undertaken in house utilising existing staff resources and technology.

Council needs to set a budget of overseas travel for each department and for each trip. The allocated budget should be listed in the travel report and recorded on the Travel Register.

The name and date of authorisation of any overseas and interstate travel should be recorded on the register. This is currently done as a notation in relation to Councillor’s travel but it could be better designed and managed.

Regular summary reports should be tabled at the Council’s Finance Corporate Performance Committee Meetings
The Travel Register should provide a break down of costs (Accommodation, Travel, Communication, Conference Fees and sundry)

The Travel Register should be published on the Councils internet site within 24 hours of any updates, changes, or additions to the register.

I request that this report be tabled and considered at the next Council’s Finance and Corporate Services Performance meeting.

Further that Council adopt a policy to ensure that all public documents are accessible and published on the Council’s Internet site.

Should you require further Information I can be contacted via return email

Yours faithfully

Anthony van der Craats

http://melbournecitycouncil.blogspot.com