The Parliament of Victoria has voted to dismiss the City of Casey Councillors, effective from midnight on 19 February 2020. This follows the Minister for Local Government, Adem Somyurek, tabling the report on Casey City Council from the Municipal Monitor and the subsequent introduction of a Bill before Parliament recommending the dismissal of all Casey City Council Councillors.
Minister Somyurek has appointed Ms Noelene Duff as the interim Administrator of Casey from 20 February 2020 for a period of 90 days, or until a panel of administrators is appointed for the Council, whichever occurs earlier. Elections will be held again in October 2024.
Officers will do everything possible to ensure a smooth transition to working with the new Council, to deliver and advocate for infrastructure and services for our rapidly growing community.
Noelene is an experienced Chief Executive Officer and Board member with a demonstrated history of working in the government and non-government sectors. She is skilled in governance, stakeholder management, community and stakeholder engagement and change management, and received a Public Service Medal in the 2020 Australia Day Honours in recognition of her outstanding service to local government in Victoria.
What are the role and responsibilities of an Administrator?
Administrators must perform all the functions, powers and duties of a Councillor of the Casey City Council as set out in the Local Government Act.
What happens to the role of the Mayor?
Where an Administrator or, a panel of Administrators is appointed, the Chairperson of the panel of Administrators, must perform all the functions, powers and duties of the Mayor of the Casey City Council.
What is the remuneration of the Administrators? Who pays for that?
An Administrator is entitled to payment and allowances and is employed on conditions set by the Minister. Remuneration and allowances will be paid by the City of Casey.
Normally when Administrators are appointed, people may end up losing their jobs or be made redundant as a result. Is that the case at the City of Casey?
Administrators appointed in this Local Government context is not the same as the role and responsibilities of Administrators appointed in the private sector. Administrators must perform all the functions, powers and duties of a Councillor of the Casey City Council as set out in the Local Government Act. Administrators essentially replace the role and responsibilities of Councillors.
Will Council services still operate as normal?
The Executive Leadership Team, under the direction and leadership of the CEO, remains responsible for the operations of the City of Casey and all staffing decisions. Services will continue to operate as is.
Casey had a monitor in 2016. Why weren’t the problems fixed then?
A monitor was appointed in 2016 following the Victorian Ombudsman’s report into the City of Casey’s Special Charge Scheme. The Monitor’s report detailed how the Ombudsman’s recommendations and concerns were handled by the Council. It also explained the initiatives implemented by the Council to ensure these changes were followed in the future. The most recent Monitor’s report and the current hearings before the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) concern different and separate issues and allegations.
What does this mean for the IBAC hearings and investigation?
The Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) is Victoria's agency responsible for preventing and exposing public sector corruption and police misconduct. IBAC’s jurisdiction covers state and local government, police, parliament and the judiciary. Their Operation Sandon – through public examinations into allegations of serious corrupt conduct in relation to planning and property development decisions at the City of Casey Council involving Councillors (not Officers) and developers - will continue in 2020. Anyone with information relevant to the investigation is encouraged to report it to IBAC.
How can I raise my concerns when my local Councillor no longer represents me?
Administrators must perform all the functions, powers and duties of a Councillor of the Casey City Council, including representing the interests of Casey’s communities. More information on contacting and engaging with Administrators will be made available in the coming days.
You can also jump online to report an issue, such as problems with trees or roads, to leave feedback, or contact our Customer Service Centre between 8am and 6pm Mondays to Fridays on 03 9705 5200, or visit one of our customer service centres in Narre Warren at 2 Patrick Northeast Drive or Cranbourne at Shop 156, South Gippsland Highway
All council services will continue to operate as usual.