Cockburn Council given bill

COCKBURN City Council will be required to pay the full cost of the inquiry that led to its dismissal.

Local Government minister Paul Omodei announced his decision today and said he had told the commissioners that the money would have to be paid to the Local Government Department in three instalments.

The first of $722,494 will need to be paid by October 30.

Further instalments of $500,000 each will be required to be paid on October 30, 2001 and 2002.

Mr Omodei said in making his decision he had regard for:

• The prior inquiries by the Department of Local Government and the ombudsman, and the council’s responses;

• The range of findings against councillors and staff covering various issues; and

• The fact that it was the behaviour of the council itself, which led to the establishment of the inquiry.

Mr Omodei forwarded to the council an itemised account of the cost of the inquiry which at $1,722,494, was less than the previous estimate of $1.8 million.

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