Inquiry into council to take 6mths

THE public inquiry into Tweed Shire Council announced last week by Minister for Local Government Tony Kelly is set to get under way next month - but the hearing of evidence is not expected till February next year.

The inquiry, with the powers of a Royal Commission, is to be headed by University of Sydney Professor Maurie Daly and could take up to six months.

A spokesperson for Mr Kelly said preliminary hearings were planned to start on Thursday, December 16, subject to the availability of an appropriate venue.

But those hearings, the spokesperson said, were aimed at outlining the scope of the inquiry and would only take one or two days.

The hearing of detailed evidence, she said, would probably take place in February.

Meanwhile, written submissions have been invited from persons wanting to comment on the terms of reference, indicating whether they wish to appear at the public hearings.

They should be forwarded to the Office of the Commissioner, Tweed Shire Council Public Inquiry, Locked Bag A5045, Sydney South NSW 1235 by January 28 next year.

People wishing to make oral submissions only should submit their requests in writing also by January 28 to the Office of the Commissioner.

Details of the venue and times of the public hearings are to be announced soon, the spokesperson said.

Mr Kelly has appointed Professor Maurice Daly as commissioner of the inquiry.

Among the key elements of the inquiry are: whether the elected representatives have adequately, appropriately and reasonably carried out their responsibilities in the best interests of all ratepayers and residents, in an environment free from conflicts of interest; and the appropriateness of the relationship between elected representatives and proponents of development in the council area.

For further information on the inquiry call (02) 9289 4020 or email

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