Surprise, Surprise Council administration show contempt and continue to avoid disclosure and accountability

Surprise surprise. The Melbourne City Council have failed to publish the Council’s Travel Register detailing the cost of staff and Councillor’s overseas and interstate travel.

The Travel Register is a public document and is required to be maintained by the City Council pursuant to the Local Government Regulations (Regulation 11).

The Travel Register was previously published on the Council’s web site but mysteriously was removed following the Council election by the CEO, David Pitchford, during the 2004 Christmas holiday period without the authority or consent of the elected Council.

The City Council passed a resolution in December 2005 requiring that the publication of the Travel Register be reinstated. Yesterday was the deadline and the City Council administration have failed to published the Travel Register.

Questions Raised:

  • Has the Council administration and David pitchford acted in good faith?
  • Is the administration demonstrating its ongoing contempt for the elected Council?
  • What actions and steps will the elected Council take to restore public confidence in the Governance of the Melbourne City Council

The Melbourne City Council continue to go to extraordinary efforts to avoid disclosure and accountability.

– Letter sent to the City Council February 1, 2006-

The Lord Mayor and Councillors
David Pitchford, CEO,
City of Melbourne

Dear Councillors

Publication of the Council’s Travel Register

I note with serious concern that the City of Melbourne administration have failed to published the Council’s Travel Register as anticipated and expected in accordance with the resolution of the elected Council moved by Cr Shanahan and seconded by Cr Snedden at its December 2005 meeting.

It was understood that the expressed intention of the Council was for the Travel Register to be reinstated and published on the Councils web site in accordance with the time-lines associated with the publication of the Councillor’s Quarterly Expense Statement.

As of 12:00AM February 1, 2006 the City of Melbourne had published the Councillors expense statement but has failed to reinstate or publish the Council’s Travel Register. WHY?

This raises issues of serious concern. Has the City Council administration and the CEO, David Pitchford acted in good faith?

The failure of the Melbourne City Council to reinstate and publish the Travel Register undermines public confidence in the administration of the City Council and the role of the elected Council. The Council’s administration continue to go to extraordinary efforts to avoid disclosure and accountability.

I request, without delay, information and explanation accordingly

Awaiting your immediate attention and reply to the above

Yours faithfully

Anthony van der Craats

cc Media, Members of Parliament

Melbourne City Council – Holding them to account

– Extract from the Minuets –

Motion Moved Cr Shanahan

1. That Council:
1.1. publish the Council’s Travel Register on the Council’s Website on a quarterly basis, in accordance with the timeframes established with respect to the publication of Councillor Expense Statements;