Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore / File photo

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A spokesperson for Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore has admitted staff in her office were in error when they linked a resident’s Development Application (DA) and his alleged opposition to the Bourke St cycleway.

Surry Hills resident Luke Harper, owner of an historic four-storey terrace house on Bourke St, alleges his 2011 DA for home renovations and improvements was knocked back due to his perceived opposition to the cycleway.

A briefing note prepared by the Lord Mayor’s office, obtained by Mr Harper, said: “The terrace is owned by Luke Harper, a key objector to the Bourke St cycleway proposal and his architects are Cracknell and Lonergan … who have proven difficult for Council staff to work with in the past.”

The note was circulated to all Clover Moore Independent Team councillors. Council unanimously rejected Mr Harper’s DA, despite the City of Sydney’s planners recommending its approval with conditions.

Mr Harper subsequently took the matter to the NSW Land and Environment Court, which ruled in his favour.

The City commissioned probity auditors O’Connor Marsden to investigate allegations by Mr Harper that matters unrelated to his DA were taken into account – but O’Connor Marsden found there was no undue influence.

Mr Harper’s case has now been taken up by Councillor Angela Vithoulkas, who says the matter must be revisited.

“It is entirely appropriate to have this matter looked into with fresh eyes by a professional auditor,” said Ms Vithoulkas this week.

Ms Vithoulkas said it seemed “unusual” that O’Connor Marsden did not interview anyone from the City’s planning department or the Lord Mayor’s office during its investigation.

Last month, Ms Vithoulkas raised separate concerns about O’Connor Marsden, questioning whether the company’s investigations were adequate. She pointed out that O’Connor Marsden cleared former NSW Mining Minister Ian Macdonald over the granting of a controversial coal mining license, which was later found to be corrupt.

A probity report by commercial law firm Clayton Utz found O’Connor Marsden had failed to carry out “a robust investigation”.

A spokesperson for the Lord Mayor this week stood by O’Connor Marsden, insisting: “The City is satisfied with the quality of the work undertaken by O’Connor Marsden.”

But the spokesperson admitted Mr Harper’s alleged objection to the Bourke St cycleway had nothing to do with his DA and should not have been noted.

“The line was irrelevant and shouldn’t have been included in the briefing note. Staff in the Lord Mayor’s office have been instructed to only include relevant information in briefing notes.”

Mr Harper alleged the Lord Mayor was corrupt.

“I believe Clover Moore is unprofessional and corrupt. I believe she sought to settle a score through the assessment of my DA,” said Mr Harper, who advised he was preparing submissions to the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).

Mr Harper added that he was never against the Bourke St cycleway and had only objected to the planned removal of several trees.

O’Connor Marsden did not respond to requests for comment.

  • J . Ex employee

    I resigned from council a year ago due to my objection to the way council was run under clover Moore. I worked in level five Kent St Town Hall House. There have been numerous occasions when internal investigations within council were kept quiet or shut down due to them implicating high profile people on council . Council would hire investigators who were always biased to council side and the outcomes would always protect these high profile people within the council , also Monica Barone would fail in consulting the Icac ( a form of corruption itself) . The reason has always been the political because if made public clover would surely suffer the consequences. I hope there is an Independent commission against corruption inquiry into how council has been covering up corruption within its ranks. I myself would come forward and tell the Icac everything I know if there was to be an investigation , for i can tell you if the truth comes out people will see just how unlawfully this council has been run behind closed doors.

  • Andrew Woodhouse

    Our experience is the same as J’s.

    I would also be pleased to provide evidence and documents to any ICAC enquiry.

    Regrettably however, I would not be surprised if more information is forthcoming.

    The planning process is politicised, as are many other departments.

    Thank you to City News for raising this important matter of public probity.

    Andrew Woodhouse
    President
    Potts Point and Kings Cross Heritage Conservation Society
    Phone 0415 949 506

  • Matt Boulton

    Staff were not the only ones in error: someone was in charge of them in the Office of the Lord Mayor?

    Who?

    Clover Moore, that’s who.

    Matt

  • Ami

    Time for don page to look into the inner workings of this council

  • Brian

    What about all Hee councillor s who voted to reject the development application . Dictator Clover thinks she doesn’t have to be accountable. Her time is surely up

  • Peter

    If this story by Peter Hackney is true then I see no other way but for an external inquiry. You obviously cannot trust an internal inquiry run by council itself.

  • Peter Young

    This is deeply worrying.

    There must be an external inquiry – either to clear the air or expose what appears to be the corruption of due process – emanating from the “political office” of the Office of Lord Mayor, which exists outside the corporate governance structure of our City Council. If there has been corruption of due process, mechanisms must be put in place to ensure it never happens again.

  • Andrew Chuter

    Yes, how can we also explain the massive ramping up of residential densities across the City of Sydney LGA at places like Ashmore, Harold Park et al against massive resident opposition? They call it ‘consultation’ but it is better known as ‘ignoring’. The excuse is State targets but in fact new dwelling targets per annum have fallen throughout the period when council is upping the densities. The real reason is corrupt developer influence.

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Given the consultant paid by City of Sydney regarding cycleway advised against building it Clover Moore and Monica Barone should be ashamed to have even gone ahead with construction. For over a year I have been challenging City of Sydney to work for the community, not themselves and to stop the coverups and deceit. People are dying on the streets of LGA Sydney they pay a homeless outreach team majorly full of 457 workers from Ireland, rather than employ more experienced people who have lived homelessness. Homeless Unit project officer and manager continue to forget about social inclusion measures yet the Homeless Unit fails to even work with electoral commission assisting people to vote.

    Clover Moore needs a wake up call, for sure, as does Barone and those that cover up for office of Lord Mayor…one stuff up after another with them, Don Page needs to intervene that is for sure….as does and should ICAC over many concerns. Councillors have a hard job working for the community when OLM staffers and Clover team are not working in best interests of community….but themselves.

  • Jake McPherson

    The “OLM” is a separate, but rate-payer funded, coven of workers, about 24 of them, directly controlled by Clover Moore personally.

    They script all her Cover Notes – summaries about DAs – such as the one about Luke Harper’s relatively benign DA.

    Yet she now tries to blame them for this gross “error”.
    So has the author of this Cover Note been sacked?
    No.

    Clover Moore is not answerable to anyone for what OLM staff do, how they do it, or much they’re paid. No information about their job descriptions is available: all such requests are refused.

    Yet they’re costing ratepayers about $1 million per year.

    As a result, she has created a fiefdom with many of her OLM staff paid to politically promote her and work on her election campaigns.

    This debauches, perhaps ‘corrupts’, the political system.

    OLM really stands for Our Licentious Mayor.

    It’s time to invoke the state government’s new “dysfunctional councils” legislation over this scandal.

    Jake & Ellie
    ————

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Exactly Jake and Ellie, mind you the Office Lord Mayor alone is 3.1 million. Many councillors on her team have not even placed a motion to council since elected last year. They follow her motions..Councillors and Office Lord Mayor INCLUDING CLOVER and BARONE responsible to the people, not themselves

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    http://www.altmedia.net.au/lord-mayors-staff-numbers-rival-premiers/82174 Here are figures for Office Lord Mayor. Time for a thorough investigation at City of Sydney of all business units and Lord Mayor and CEO

  • Jean

    Why isn’t the iCac or state government looking into this , I can’t understand it. We need to know the truth

  • City of Sydney

    The claims being made against the City and the Lord Mayor are baseless and the Lord Mayor has asked the CEO to refer all material to ICAC so that can be confirmed.

    The matter refers to a development application that went to a public meeting of Council and all 10 Councillors unanimously made the same decision about the application.

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Claims made by me against City of Sydney are NOT baseless that includes the FACT that you were advised by consultant you hired to not go ahead with the bikeway, a bikeway that has led to incidents occurring. City of Sydney needs to go before ICAC over many issues inclusive of staffers accepting gifts, to lies and mismanagement of finances.

  • Robert

    I have it on good authority that someone from the Office of The Lord Mayor threatened the journalist with legal action for publishing the story

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Ohh scare tactics Robert. I say well done Peter Hackney for beginning to unearth the rot at City of Sydney…This issue of coverups and more through Barone and Moore needs to go to ICAC for a thorough investigation ! This is probably half of one percent of the rot at City of Sydney

  • Jim

    Well done Peter Hackney looks like clover and Monica are starting to feel the heat. If Monica had nothing to hide she should of reported the findings to the iCac before not when someone has blown the lid on them. I think panick buttons are being pressed this very moment at town hall.

  • Charles Kelly

    It’s certainly not the first time she’s corruptly abused her position as a public official.I once spoke with the owner of a Kings Cross cafe where many City of Sydney Council staff members used to eat. This was just after Clover Moore irresponsibly squandered millions on the Kings Cross ‘upgrade’. The cafe owner was once asked by a newspaper reporter if the massive disruption (through closures, paving, roadworks etc.) had adversely affected his business. All he did was honestly answer the question. His honesty was repaid through harsh retribution from Moore herself, who banned all staff from visiting the cafe the moment the owner’s comments went to print.

  • stephanie calabornes

    Ray Brealey also commented on Lord Mayor Clover Moore MP’s Wall post.
    Ray wrote: “Have you seen or heard this hazardous, offensive and intrusive noise being emitted at 61-79 Quay Street Haymarket with the approval of City of Sydney Council and Clover Moore? This noise has caused damage to my hearing and my reports of this to Clover Moore and City of Sydney Council have been ignored. This is the behaviour of a psychopathic immoral personality not a leader. See this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X83NnMGOlS8

    another issue that City of Sydney has shunned, why forget community for greed

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Stephanie Calabornes
    Time to ask all residents of sydney if they have concerns over how any of you have been treated by City of Sydney and or Clover Moore I urge you to contact any councillor not on Clover Moores Independant team with any complaints to have them forwarded through to the Independant Commission Against corruption you will note here Clover did not apply for concerns to be directed immediately through to ICAC, she waited until after concerned members in Sydney challenged her to do so http://www.altmedia.net.au/cycleway-objection-irrelevant-admits-lord-mayors-office/82572#comment-48411 I ask you all again, contact any Councillors that are not on Clover Moores team and ask them to assist you with a complaint to the ICAC. Here is the listing for City of Sydney Councillors. The first 5, including Moore are on her team..http://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/council/about-council/councillors choose from any of the others. I wish you well

  • Henry

    Monica Barone has got a lot to answer for.

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    The City of Sydney waste continues ratepayers and business people need to know

    This from Vikki Campion Daily Telegraph reporter

    vikki campion ‏@vikkicampion now The $4.9 million College St bike path is going to be ripped up by State Gov under new plan.Sydney City Council is calling for compensation

  • Brian

    Yet our rates keep going up and or services decline please clover try and do one simple thing and keep our streets clean.

  • The Clover Moore ‘independent party’ is a joke. Ms Moore calls the shots the ‘independents’ jump It is a travesty of democracy.

    That said, I’m glad we have a Clover Moore rather than an Lib or a Lab

  • stephanie Calabornes

    Monica Barone and Clover Moore at it again, approving a development without ensuring infrastructure was in place. AGAIN I call for a thorough ICAC investigation into City of Sydney. About time media were involved in ensuring this occurred….

    MINUTES FROM RESIDENTS MEETING

    Ashmore Precinct Development

    DA Stage 2 Erko

    issues with public transport/local infrastructure/building and traffic density/schools
    Leighton DA approved
    reports due August last year completed only 5 weeks ago
    Clover Moore developers friend
    Stage 2 owned by Goodman, building will have to be bought out
    development for 6,900 people, only 1900 parking spaces, Clovers words ” walk or ride bikes”
    All traffic flow only based on Erskineville residents, not on transitting traffic
    waitlist for school places is 500 yet need 195 school places with ffamilies purchasing into precinct, however Leighton commented 200 kid places needed and 80 preschool places.
    Wrote to all councillors re this. All worried about losing job so nothing done, comment from Kemmis ” Clover doesn’t want the publicity, publicity of late in the media, we can’t do this cause we will get fired ”
    Kemmis placed motion for all infrastructure
    No written responses from any councillor except Vithoulkas and Doutney
    No response from Barone or meeting
    Ashmore development on a floodplain water run off from state rail line not being addressed, cost to fix $24million
    restriction on car parking spaces due to floodplain/water
    Clover was asked do you want to build then have to rip development up in 10 years
    Council does DA investigations by council infrastructure does not support project, said should not go ahead city said have to go ahead cause we will be fined.
    Colston street residents have seen 4 foot of water sits
    Why does the City of Sydney use historical data rather than use more up to date methodology from census when looking at car useage and residents in areas

  • Mike

    What does Luke Harper’s status as a “key objector” to the Bourke St cycleway have to do with his DA? f it’s irrelevant like Clover is claiming, why did she mention it in her briefing note about his DA?

  • Mike

    P.S. Sure, the council vote may have been unanimous but most councillors in 2011 were from the “Clover Moore Independent Team” – they are hardly going to go against their leader! And the Labor and Greens councillors were well known to side with Clover. Mr Harper’s only hope was the Liberal councillor Shayne Mallard. He’s well-known to be a cyclist so if any word got to him that Harper was against the cycleway…

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore has threatened to sue a local paper for defamation. That and other media tidbits.

    CloMo threatens to sue Sydney rag. Sydney lord mayor Clover Moore is threatening to sue community paper Sydney City News  — a free weekly paper distributed in the City of Sydney council area — over an article containing allegations she is “unprofessional and corrupt”. Moore’s lawyers Makinson d’Apice sent a legal writ to the paper’s owner last Friday demanding

    Clover Moore, you are not tough….look at you run to the lawyers cause you are attempting to cover up

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Again, good on Peter Hackney and Alternative Media…Clover Moore scare tactics, I am right behind Alternative Media and anyone sticking themselves out for the Clover Moore chosen to be forgotten, will assist in court if need be

    Publisher’s response to Clover Moore’s threats
    Author:Lawrence GibbonsPosted:Friday, 13 September 2013

    inShare
    Lawrence Gibbons, Publisher of the Alternative Media Group of Australia, in response to Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore’s threat to sue the company for defamation:
    As the lone, independent community newspaper in the City of Sydney, we believe it is our duty to fearlessly report all sides of a story. We also believe that there is the right to free speech in Australia. The High Court has consistently found that newspapers have the right to report controversial claims against public officials and that Local Councils do not have the right to sue for defamation.
    As the publicly elected Lord Mayor of Sydney, Clover Moore should be used to people denouncing her on a whole range of issues. Luke Harper felt that he was the victim of a political vendetta. His application for home renovations was rejected. He appealed the decision. In court he discovered that someone in the Lord Mayor’s office had circulated a note to Councillors that the applicant had objected to a controversial bike lane in Surry Hills, championed by Clover Moore. These facts had been reported before in the pages of the Sydney Morning Herald, who noted that Luke Harper’s development application had nothing to do with his opinions about a proposed bike lane. Did Clover Moore ask her lawyers to send a letter threatening defamation to Fairfax?
    For the record, we asked the Lord Mayor’s office for comment about the dispute with a Surry Hills resident and started our story with a statement from her press secretary, who acknowledged that the file note was inappropriate. We concluded the story with a comment from Luke Harper who raised questions about Clover Moore’s conduct.
    Mr Harper’s complaint is now being investigated by the NSW Department of Local Government, ICAC, the NSW Ombudsman, and various State MPs. When a public official’s conduct is under scrutiny the media has a responsibility and a right to ask questions.
    During last year’s heated local election campaign a political opponent threatened to sue Clover Moore for defamation. At the time News Corp reported, “An unrepentant Ms Moore said yesterday it was outrageous in a democracy which valued free speech to threaten someone with legal action for asking questions. ‘Yes, they are tough questions but anyone standing for political office should be prepared to answer tough questions in an ethical and transparent way.’”
    We are flattered to think that our lone community newspaper could in anyway damage the Clover brand, which is supported by a high paid army of professional spin doctors with a larger budget than the gross revenues of our publishing company combined.
    We recognise that Town Hall has a different relationship with larger, corporate, mainstream media outlets that are only too happy to print press releases and positive, feel good stories about Council initiatives in exchange for hundreds of thousands of dollars in lucrative advertising revenues for which they do not need to tender. Our willingness to report complaints, disputes and adversarial opinions makes us unpopular with the populist Lord Mayor Clover Moore. But we are only doing our job. And we will defend our right to do so.
    An excerpt of the legal writ from Makinson d’Apice, acting for Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore, dated Friday September 6
    An excerpt of the legal writ from Makinson d’Apice, acting for Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore, dated Friday September 6

  • Shayne Chester

    In comments above, the City of Sydney says the claims being made against the City and the Lord Mayor are baseless and the Lord Mayor has asked the CEO to refer all material to ICAC so that can be confirmed. Is The City saying that there was no briefing note prepared by the Lord Mayor’s office which Mr Harper has in his possession which states: “The terrace is owned by Luke Harper, a key objector to the Bourke St cycleway proposal and his architects are Cracknell and Lonergan … who have proven difficult for Council staff to work with in the past.”? And was the note NOT circulated to all Clover Moore Independent Team councillors? And did Council NOT unanimously rejected Mr Harper’s DA, despite the City of Sydney’s planners recommending its approval with conditions. Did the NSW Land and Environment Court, NOT rule in Mr. Harper’s favour? And is The City suggesting that none of this should be reported? I’d say The City has a lot of back pedaling to do, and I’d say a great big huzzah to this publication and the reporter Mr. Hackney for showing the kind of truly independent and fearless investigative journalism that we see all too little of in the mainstream..

  • Glen

    What did the briefing note appear by itself like some sort of Houdini trick? Sorry Clover the lies cannot be covered up now.

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Clover Moore admitting her staff made an error..As many have said very bad error of judgement and/or/professionalism

    facebook 18th October 2012
    Hi Stephanie,
    Lord Mayor Clover Moore MP commented on your link.
    Lord Mayor Clover Moore MP wrote: “Stephanie, I agree, there was irrelevant information in that briefing note and my staff have been reminded to only include relevant details.

    Not all Councillors were given this note, yet Councillors unanimously voted to refuse this DA for breaches of the planning controls. I was surprised to see this issues being raised again as the applicant came back with amended plans and the DA was approved.”

  • Mathew c

    Just goes to show Clover has dug herself a hole that she is going to find hard to climb out of. Good on you Stephanie calabornes , for promoting the truth , and thank god we have an open forum such as alt media that is not controlled or influenced by mainstream media.

  • Stephan Gyory

    They say that ‘irrelevant information was included and should not have been’

    Does this imply that legally ‘irrelevant information’ that IS however discussed within council in relation to DAs, should be left off the record?

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    here is the latest, and good on councillors for fighting for community for years Clover Moore failed http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/lord-mayor-clover-moore-grilled-at-parliamentary-hearing-over-voting-difficulties-at-local-government-elections/story-fni0cx4q-1226720145417 Keep the momentum going and if the nerve is there for Clover to pursue Alt Media for calling Clovers cards, hope we will support him

  • Julie le Strange

    W A R N I N G

    Council’s own referral to the ICAC on its own accord has advantages for council, not ratepayers.

    Why?

    Because:

    1 the terms of referral and the narrowness of the complaint itself are determined by council, not anyone else.
    Council can thus partly or significantly pre-determine the outcome of any ICAC findings; and

    2 the ICAC only needs to respond to the complainant, ie., City of Sydney Council, no-one else.
    In the past, identical circumstances have meant council does not release the ICAC report.

    For example, the City of Sydney email above states:
    “the Lord Mayor has asked the CEO to refer all material to ICAC so that it can be confirmed.

    The matter refers to a development application that went to a public meeting of Council and all 10 Councillors unanimously made the same decision about the application.”

    So Monica Barone will only send material SHE thinks is relevant.
    And then ONLY in relation to the DA decision itself – NOT the other matters swirling about such as the O’Connor Marsden report or subsequent local court case.

    And then only so it can be “confirmed”.

    But, the facts do not need confirmation or investigation: council’s and Clover’s modus operandi do.

    In other words, it’s all a set up and white wash.
    Council is absolutely desperate to contain any fallout.

    So it is important everyone write to His Honour Justice Ipp and complain – individually – as well:

    icac@icac.nsw.gov.au

    AND also ask council for a copy of their referral to the ICAC.

    J le Strange

  • matt

    Interesting to see this story still up a fortnight later – looks like Clover’s bluff hasn’t worked. If she did sue it would be a PR disaster for her. Trying to silence the independent media is not a good look and I’m sure she doesn’t want the spotlight back on what happened to Luke Harper. WHat a dumb move she’s made.

  • stephanie Calabornes

    I plead with ANYONE, who has knowledge of DA breaches or anything one feels clover moore or monica barone have breached regarding codes of conduct, failing to include community to contact ICAC, the independant commission against corruption. I have just received, well 3 hours ago received email from them and they will be pursuing matters with Clover Moore..Again the chance is now, yes, or later also, yet why not do it now and make the commission worthwhile. Thank You email icac@icac.nsw.gov.au http://www.icac.nsw.gov.au/contact-us

    Thanks for reading, and/or, doing

  • Brendan Beavan

    I suspect people will regret involvement with Stephanie Calabornes. Looks like petty local politics to me.

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    Brendan Beavan, there is a lot more to this than the objection, and more people on Sydney streets are coming forward with SERIOUS information and have contacted differing sources. Lord Mayor has 24 staff for example, yet continuously make errors. in my sincere opinion,including 18 months of street and home based research there is a lot to be considered…NOT just the cycleway, all other info before and after surrounding the objection..MANY reports have now been passed to ICAC, people have that right.. So NO MOORE than PETTY Politics. Politics in case you were wondering affects peoples lives !

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    To J. Ex Employee: there is to be an ICAC Investigation into Clover Moore and Monica Barone, 10 people I know have reported concerns regarding City of Sydney and Clover Moore. Up to you, Councillor Vithoulkas has reported at least one concern to ICAC and Minister for Local Govt. So if you still feel like the need to comment you know how to contact Councillor Vithoulkas, elsewise you know ICAC details.

  • J. Ex employee

    Stephanie calabornes I wrote to angela today ive given her some details and names to follow up on , if she does then i promise you fireworks. I have choosen to stay anonymous as i still have family that work on the council and i know they would be targeted because thats how the city works

  • Stephanie Calabornes

    good on you, many have reported to icac, I currently am placarding outside town hall regarding concerns, as you would be aware, there are codes of conduct, which, at least Moore and Barone have broken, some councillors also, by keeping silent …Angela wont hold back…neither would a few others I know of…We all can play a part in ensuring the city starts to look after its citizens which according to even, President of Local Govt Australia, its role. Thanks for assisting…sad for hardship, for many of us, however.

  • Andrew Woodhouse

    CLOVER MOORE’S USE-BY DATE?

    Clover Moore’s bully boy tactics against the little, independent, Alternative Media Group over the Luke Harper case may well backfire.

    We refer to today’s article in The Daily Telegraph,
    “Clover’s threat to sue over DA claim,” October 8, page 15, by Vikki Campion.

    If Mrs Moore pursues her case the whole mess will be revealed in open court including, perhaps, other allegations.

    Her claim she’s referred this matter to the ICAC fails to state council has limited the ICAC’s terms of reference and the ICAC only reports backs to the one making the referral, in this case, her.

    So this case may never be fully investigated and we may never see the final ICAC report.

    Now Clover Moore is well over 70 perhaps it’s time Barry O’Farrell had another review: this time to introduce compulsory retirement at 72 for politicians just as we do for Judges*; to ensure competence.

    * see section 44 Judicial Officers Act http://www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/viewtop/inforce/act+100+1986+cd+0+N

    link to D/T article:
    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/clover-moore8217s-threat-to-sue-local-newspaper-city-news/story-fni0cx12-1226734345848

    Thank you to City News for raising this important issue in the public interest.

    Andrew Woodhouse
    President
    Potts Point & Kings Cross Heritage Conservation Society
    Ph 0415 949 506
    Saving our past for the future
    =========================================================

  • Juliette le Strange

    I refer to above comment posted September 6th, 2013 @ 6:00 pm by the City of Sydney:

    “The claims being made against the City and the Lord Mayor are baseless and the Lord Mayor has asked the CEO to refer all material to ICAC so that can be confirmed.

    The matter refers to a development application that went to a public meeting of Council and all 10 Councillors unanimously made the same decision about the application.”

    So the CEO is ONLY referring to the ICAC the very specific DA that went to council – absolutely nothing more. This will allow the ICAC to say “the decision was passed legitimately and was not corrupt”.

    And the terms of the referral are designed to limit any adverse findings.

    However, the real issues for the ICAC are:

    1 To what extent did the Lord Mayor’s Cover Note, which erroneously referred to Luke Harper’s cycleway objection,as distinct from his real objection which was the loss of street trees, influence decision-makers?

    After all, the Land and Environment Court found council’s decision to be the wrong one.

    2 Was this Cover Note sent to other Councillors? If so whom?
    And why? Did they read it?

    3 To what extent did the Cover Note influence Clover Moore’s decision, its intended purpose.

    4 If it was irrelevant as claimed why wasn’t it returned?

    Jules

  • Peter Young – Kings Cross

    In answer to a question on notice asked by Clr Mandla, at the meeting of City of Sydney Council on 18 November 2013, regarding the distribution of briefing notes, information etc to Councillors by the political office of the Office of Lord Mayor, Clover Moore replied in writing, inter alia, “Staff in the Office of Lord Mayor work under my direction..”.

    So the “narrative” that the irrelevant information provided to Councillors who are members of the Clover Moore Political Party, was a result of a rogue employee – who has since left the Office of Lord Mayor – appears to be looking very shaky..

    Clover Moore needs to explain what directions she gave to staff for the preparation of this briefing note, what directions she gave for the distribution of it to Councillors and whether this direction was a “one off direction” relating solely to this DA in Surry Hills – or whether it was merely a general direction given to staff in relation to all DA’s that come before the Council.