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Collapse Issue 523:<br />12 Jul 2021<br />_____________Issue 523:
12 Jul 2021
Collapse  NEWS NEWS
Audit finds Woy Woy car spaces will cost $211,000 each
Ferry service abandons pet ban plan
'We cannot afford to be complacent' - Crouch
CWA still waiting for compensation for wharf land
Group may ask for Bays roads to be 'shared zones'
CWA branch calls on council to be 'fair and transparent'
ACF branch calls for retention of playground and tree
Media release ignores facts of playground strategy
Palm Beach ferries diverted
Actions of first Administrator should be examined - CEN
Grants program opens with $900,000
Wicks wants the Central Coast 'a stand-alone region'
More improvements to Patonga hall
MPs call for more government support
Speed camera program raises fines not safety - Tesch
Use vouchers with local businesses, Tesch urges
MP runs colouring and drawing competition
Pearl Beach Challenge postponed due to lockdown
Rotary club takes 'Christmas' holiday
Six topics identified for church purpose statement
Umina Rotary hears about Clean4Shore success
Egg and bacon roll morning still planned
Garage sale might have been better with good weather
Date for fete at Patonga
Four books to discuss at next CWA book club
Guide dog puppy raising is 'giving back to community'
Bays group registers for QR code
A new theme for a new president
Leadership positions vacant at Baptist church
Tree lovers welcomed
Pandemic winner
Clean4shore to hold annual meeting
Rotary awards honorary memberships
Fellowship awarded to club treasurer
Plans to fly to England
Shops offer online ordering and contact-free pick-up
Thanks to Rotary club from Uganda
Little rain for start of July
Four-unit development proposed for Paul St
Planning comments may go unnoticed
Three-unit development proposed for Bowden Rd
Liquour licence applications considered
Go ahead given for Mutu St factory
Where are the commuter parking spaces?
No limit to high-handed council behaviour
Short-term gain at economic, social, environmental cost
Access is 'main obstacle' to aged care staff vaccination
Tribute paid to 'learned and loved older Australians'
A sign of brighter days ahead
Collapse  ARTS ARTS
The Bays art show postponed until October
Dates set for rescheduled Bays art show
Bays' book on sale
Book launch postponed
Learning from home this week
Preschool celebrates Naidoc Week
Students sent letters about targeted programs
Bowls club raises $5000 on charity day
Cycling 'tour' continues
Cycling Tour duration extended
Tesch congratulates Wimbledon winners
Golf club publishes 10km map
Junior touch registrations start
Bowls clubs proceed with Mixed Kingfisher carnival
Oval availability welcomed
New infrastructure for soccer field
Tribute paid to Freddy Querruel
Southern Spirit registrations start for all teams
Tennis registration postponed
Umina surf club opens online registrations



Actions of first Administrator should be examined - CEN

The Community Environment Network has written to Minister for Local Government Ms Shelley Hancock asking for the terms of reference of the Central Coast Council inquiry to be extended to cover the period of the first Administrator in 2016.

"A change to accounting practices adopted by the first Council Administrator in 2016 was disastrous for the new council and must be examined as part of the Public Inquiry," said Network chair Mr Gary Chestnut.

"The current terms of reference exclude anything that took place before September 2017.

"Prior to the September 2017 council election, Administrator Mr Ian Reynolds and CEO Mr Gary Noble approved the accounting change that meant restricted water funds were reported as unrestricted and available to spend within the Council's consolidated general fund.

"In other words, it looked like the Council had hundreds of millions of dollars more cash to spend on capital works projects than it really did," he said.

"This policy was adopted by the Central Coast Council and its executive leadership team and has never been rescinded.

"It has been undetected and unchanged by a number of chief executive officers, acting chief executive officers and chief financial officers and was never explained to the elected councillors.

"Council's internal auditor, its audit risk and improvement committee, the NSW Audit Office and consultant auditors all subsequently failed to question the practice which significantly eroded Council's restricted funds and contributed to a cash crisis in 2020.

"The NSW Crown Solicitor has recently provided advice to the NSW Auditor General which further complicates this issue by finding that the spending of those funds was legitimate.

"This advice by the NSW Crown Solicitor may change the financial position of Council considerably.

"The Public Inquiry must be able to examine whether the additional $150 million borrowed since the councillors were suspended was necessary and whether it was reasonable or just to blame the councillors for the organisation's financial weaknesses given the Crown Solicitor's advice has legitimised the spending of restricted funds.

"The ongoing mis-reporting of restricted reserves cannot be overlooked as one of the core reasons for the Central Coast Council's financial failure.

"It must be examined by the inquiry."

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