With a state election imminent, Lord Mayor MP Clover Moore used her casting vote to approve an advertising campaign in her own name in Council last week.
Liberal Councillor Shane Mallard moved a motion that leaflets and advertising be issued in the CEO’s name—Monica Barone—only.
With the vote split 5/5, Ms Moore used her vote to ensure the advertising could roll out across her electorate, with her name and photo on it. The leaflet explained Council’s forced return to its 2007 Late Night Trading Controls after the state government rejected the amendments made.
In the Planning Development and Transport Committee document, obtained by City News and titled February 1 2011, it recommends:
“The City urgently undertake local advertising and distribute an information flyer to the City residents, venue operators and patrons of licensed premises”.
But in bold blue pen, it states above the recommendation: “in the name of CEO only”.
Ms Moore’s decision has been largely condemned, with some of her opponents describing it as a “misuse of her position” and more abruptly as a “disgusting abuse of her position for personal political gain”.
While in her time being both the Member for Sydney and the Lord Mayor, Ms Moore has faced criticism for her “conflict of interest”.
And this is not the first time. Ms Moore has previously used her casting vote to prevent Council from funding legal action against Barangaroo—an issue that recently revealed how extensive the issue of contamination is—and — to throw Rory Miles out of Rushcutters Bay caretakers cottage—a story that will not be forgotten.
Within the realm of politics, politicians wage their campaigns on the principles of transparency and accountability, promising potential voters the world, and promising honesty and sincerity. Did Clover use her position of Lord Mayor to fuel her election campaign? One would assume so.
Would her behaviour have been so largely condemned if the state election wasn’t so near? Perhaps not. In a gritty election campaign, opponents utilise whatever they can to make themselves look better, or alternatively, make their counterparts look worse. But that aside, Ms Moore has made herself look not so good. She has used taxpayers’ money to fund her election campaign—a campaign that should be run on the principle of integrity.