$90k and rising

Costs of crisis equivalent to .391 per cent rate rise

COSTS of council’s crisis have been put at $90,000, the equivalent of a .391 per cent rise in municipal rates.

The figure, included in the business paper for tomorrow night’s council meeting, includes costs of several, but not all of the ongoing investigations at the Rural City of Wangaratta.

It accounts for the $40,000-$50,000 spent engaging probity auditor, Bill Scales, to oversee an investigation into a complaint by Councillor Julian Fidge against council’s chief executive officer, Doug Sharp.

Also included are the numerous councillor conduct panels that have been set up to deal with complaints by councillors against each other, and the executive relief provided to council under the “emergency” provisions utilised by Mr Sharp when the crisis hit boiling point.

Not included are the current costs of council engaging consultants to stand in for members of the corporate management team, who are currently on sick leave.

Thankfully for ratepayers they won’t have to foot the bill for municipal inspector, Peter Stephenson’s three month stint at the rural city, with the cost to be borne by the State Government, which in turn means taxpayers will pay.

This post is part of the thread: Council Dramas – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.

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