Peg Putt, Press Release

“It has been a bleak first one hundred days of the third Labor government with the dire situation of the TT Line and Spirit III, the scandal of the TCC mates deal of Bryan Green, and of Lennon’s Ralphs Bay mates deal all coming to light.”

Will Hodgman

The first 100 days of the Lennon Government resemble a political horror movie. Labor MPs came into office strutting the stage as princes and scuttled away from Parliament on Thursday as political paupers.

MEDIA RELEASE

Peg Putt MHA

Greens Opposition Leader

Sunday, 16 JULY 2006

LENNON’S MINISTERIAL STANDARDS REMAIN UNDER QUESTION

As First 100 Days Reveal Series of Mates Deals and Deceptions

The Tasmanian Greens today called on the Premier to uphold high Ministerial standards and not to simply settle for illegal actions as the only impediment to reinstating Bryan Green to his Ministry.

Greens Opposition Leader Peg Putt MHA pointed out that the Premier’s own Code of Conduct for Government Members of Parliament 2006 states on page 2 that:

“Merely avoiding breaking the law will not always be enough to guarantee an acceptable standard of conduct,”

And said that other important considerations were that both Parliament and the Premier had been misled because of Bryan Green’s wilful omissions from his account of his Tasmanian Compliance Corporation dealings, and that the attempt to lock in a deal to advantage Labor mates two days before the election was itself unacceptable.

“This sorry saga has seen the Parliament and Premier misled by Bryan Green’s wilful omissions from his account of his TCC dealings, with the knock-on effect of the Premier not telling Parliament the full story and the Attorney-General’s Ministerial Statement, to the Parliament on the 4th of July, also lacking,” Ms Putt said.

“Paul Lennon has to lift his game, enforce higher standards of ministerial behaviour, and move away from his position that anything else goes so long as charges are not brought.”

“It has been a bleak first one hundred days of the third Labor government with the dire situation of the TT Line and Spirit III, the scandal of the TCC mates deal of Bryan Green, and of Lennon’s Ralphs Bay mates deal all coming to light.”

“If only Tasmanians had known the truth of Labor government machinations instead of being deceived when they went to the ballot box.”

“By failing to make a full and frank disclosure at the time that Mr Green claimed he had made a ‘clean breast’ of things and accepted ‘full responsibility’, he in fact misled Parliament by omission, and contributed to other government Ministers also not being in the position to provide full and frank accounts of all matters surrounding the TCC deal.”

The Ministerial Code of “conduct : GovtCodeofConduct_2006.pdf

Will Hodgman

Media Release

Tasmanian Liberal Leader

WILL HODGMAN, MHA

Monday July 17, 2006

Premier’s conduct in TCC scandal questioned

Revelations that the Premier, Paul Lennon, did not apparently appraise himself of all the facts surrounding the Tasmanian Compliance Corporation scandal before providing unwavering support for his Deputy, Bryan Green, raise serious questions about the Mr Lennon’s conduct in this affair.

Mr Lennon has cited “new information” surrounding Deputy Premier, Bryan Green’s, dealings with a company (BPACT) that was refused authorisation in 2004 to accredit builders, as well as possible breaches of the Criminal Code, as the reasons for asking Mr Green to stand down from his positions.

However, the Liberals have asked detailed questions in the Parliament about Mr Green’s dealings with Building Professions Accreditation Corporation Tasmania for many weeks. Mr Lennon strongly defended Mr Green’s decision.

The Premier should explain exactly what the “new information” is in terms of the BPACT decision because he’s already justified the fact that Mr Green rejected the application, in part to protect the viability of Tasmanian Compliance Corporation.

If there is new information, as the Premier has claimed, it’s incredible that he didn’t seek all the details surrounding Mr Green’s dealings with BPACT before defending his Deputy so vigorously in the Parliament.

Furthermore, the Liberals’ revelation that Section 69 of the Criminal Code may have been breached and the subsequent referral of that to the Solicitor General underlines the seriousness of the matter.

Mr Lennon has said in the Parliament that Clause 9 of the TCC Service Level Agreement was “illegal in any event” – so why did the Premier not seek advice about whether any crime may have been committed, and why did the Solicitor General not provide this advice when asked to look at the SLA last month?

“It’s a damning insight into the way this Premier operates that he would have Tasmanians believe that he apparently didn’t do his homework on the TCC scandal but offered his unstinting support for the Deputy Premier regardless,” Tasmanian Liberal Leader, Will Hodgman, said.

Will Hodgman

Media Release

WILL HODGMAN, MHA
Liberal Leader

Sunday July 16, 2006

Lennon government’s 100 days of horror

The first 100 days of the Lennon Government resemble a political horror movie.

Labor MPs came into office strutting the stage as princes and scuttled away from Parliament on Thursday as political paupers.

Ironically on the 100th day (Friday, July 14) there were newspaper headlines predicting the Deputy Premier, Mr Green, would be sacked – and in fact it was that day that the Premier did just that and demanded his Deputy step down.

Also that day the Auditor General announced he would conduct an audit into the Tasmanian Compliance Corporation (TCC) scandal, which had embroiled Mr Green for weeks.

It was a Black Friday. And by Saturday it had got even worse.

The Premier announced his Deputy would stand down and that the Director of Public Prosecutions would investigate whether there had been a breach of the State’s Criminal Code in relation to the TCC affair.

Mr Hodgman said the period since the election had been marked by:

The standing down of the Deputy Premier and a series of investigations into his behavior relating to the TCC affair;

broken promises and attempts to avoid parliamentary scrutiny;

a State budget that offered nothing to generate jobs and amounted to a roll of the dice; and

secret deals with ‘friends’ of Labor .

The TCC Scandal

There is much more to be played out on the matter of the TCC.

Mr Hodgman said he believed the saga, while it had focused on the Deputy Premier so far, also raised questions about the actions and leadership of the Premier.

“Mr Lennon has a lot to answer for, so far he’s used Mr Green as the fall guy,” he said.
Parliamentary Scrutiny

The initial scrapping of the Government Business Enterprise hearings of Parliament was of itself an outrageous action. Later events revealed why the Premier was so keen to leave his government-owned businesses out of the spotlight.

We saw the Hydro reveal it needed a $300 million cash injection and the TT-Line reveal it also needed a cash injection to remain solvent.

The Premier and his Deputy defended the decision to scrap the hearings to examine the operations of government businesses. The final act in the horror show involved the former Deputy Premier, Mr Llewellyn, in one day defending the action in the morning, then reversing the decision in the afternoon.

The Budget

In the past few days we have seen Tasmania continue to have the highest unemployment of any State. Job vacancy advertisement ads in newspapers also are down.

The State Budget did nothing to address this trend.

It was a gamble on growth figures the Government has used to underpin its entire operations and already we’ve seen softening in the economy, which if it continues will put enormous pressure on the State budget.

We’re also aware State Treasury has warned the Government the budget is very tight and it’s concerned about the sustainability of Government spending. Business sees nothing in the Budget for it.

Mr Hodgman said seasoned students of politics could not remember a new Government to be surrounded by as much dysfunction and scandal in its first 100 days as the Lennon Government of 2006.

Tourism

“Not long after the election the Government, which had been promoting the future of the Spirit III right up to the election eve axed it,” Mr Hodgman said.

“The Spirit III affair is a case study in deceit, especially given the manner in which the Deputy Premier used the ferry to support his election campaign.

“Then to cap that blow to the tourism industry off, we had the announcement of the closure of two Tasmanian shop-fronts, in Sydney and Melbourne, budget projection for a big fall in visitor nights over the next four years and the news that Qantas will be cutting its services on the north-west coast and into Launceston.”