Council welcomes Interim Report for Public Inquiry ToR 3, 6 & 8

02 Mar 2020

Blue Mountains City Council has welcomed the Interim Report released by Commissioner Richard Beasley SC, relating to Term of Reference (ToR) 3, and part ToR 6 and part ToR 8 (both excluding Asbestos Issues) of the Public Inquiry into the Council.

ToR 3 relates to matters arising from the Council’s employment of staff and recruitment of contractors.  Part ToR 6 required the Commissioner to determine whether the Council has facilitated, and is facilitating a consultative and supporting working environment.  Part ToR 8 required the Commissioner to determine whether the governing body and senior staff of the Council has determined, reviewed and redetermined an appropriate organisational structure and resource allocation. 

In relation to ToR 3, Commissioner Beasley states in paragraph [58]: “The evidence does not support a finding that any of the Council, its senior staff or the governing body breached any of the provisions of the LGA relevant to the Inquiry into Term of Reference 3.”

In regards to part ToR 6, the Commissioner states at paragraph [465]: “Based on the evidence before the Inquiry, I am comfortably satisfied that the Council and its governing body has facilitated a “consultative and supportive work environment” in accordance with the general principle outlined in s.8A(1)(i) of the LGA, and that the governing body has acted in accordance with subsections 223(1)(i), (j) and (l) of the LGA.”   

In regards to part ToR 8, Commissioner Beasley makes the recommendation recorded in paragraph [515]: “I recommend that the Minister ask the Office of Local Government to consider developing a set of general guidelines to assist councils in conducting reviews and redeterminations of their organisational structure.  While the OLG will have its own expertise in this area, it could be asked to consider the general phases for such an organisational review as outlined by Mr Blackadder in his report, and to also consider the approach adopted by the Council in its 2018/2019 organisation review and redesign.”

Public hearings for ToR 1, 2, 5, 7 and 9 relating to asbestos management issues will be heard in March. 

The remaining aspects of ToR 6 and 8 – relating to asbestos management – will also be heard during this period.

The full Interim Report can be viewed on the Office of Local Government website.

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