Michelle Lensink

Burnside Council

A question put forward to the Hon. R.P. WORTLEY (Minister for Industrial Relations, Minister for State/Local Government Relations) regarding Burnsidegate.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (14:28): My questions are to the Minister for State/Local Government Relations on Burnsidegate:

1.Has the minister spoken to Mr Ken MacPherson since he announced the termination of the investigation by Mr MacPherson?

2.In particular, has the minister asked Mr MacPherson whether he has completed his report?

3.Has the minister asked Mr MacPherson what he considers would be the best course of action to progress the investigation and prosecute the allegations in the light of the minister's decision to terminate it?

4.Has the minister asked Mr MacPherson whether there is any further need for investigation?

The Hon. R.P. WORTLEY (Minister for Industrial Relations, Minister for State/Local Government Relations) (14:29): I thank the honourable member for her question. I have not spoken to Mr MacPherson myself personally. It is only natural; it is a draft report, it is not completed, and the Supreme Court has created a number of legal impediments to completing that report, so this is the reason why I terminated the investigation. I did not believe it was appropriate for taxpayers to spend millions of dollars on an investigation that could take years because of the legal impediments which have arisen out of the Supreme Court judgement.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (14:30): Has anybody in the minister's office spoken to Mr MacPherson or anybody in his department—

The Hon. A. Bressington interjecting:

The PRESIDENT: Order! The Hon. Ms Lensink might want to repeat that: I could not quite hear.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: Has anybody in the minister's office or anybody in his department spoken to Mr MacPherson on this matter since the minister was appointed to the role, and does he expect that the report will never be progressed?

The Hon. R.P. WORTLEY (Minister for Industrial Relations, Minister for State/Local Government Relations) (14:30): I will take that question on notice.

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