To be attributed to Hamish McNulty, General Manager:
An article on the Parramatta Advertiser site has focused on Council’s Review of the Councillor Expenses and Facilities Policy.
For clarification, the policy is a draft document that was prepared by Council staff, not Councillors, and no decisions have been made about the policy.
The policy was due for review and the report was prepared following benchmarking of Cumberland’s policy with other Councils.
During this week’s general Council meeting, Councillor Ola Hamed attempted to discuss the draft policy. However, Councillors, including Mayor Steve Christou, voted to defer discussion on the policy as there’s further work to be done on the document.
The Parramatta Advertiser article quotes Councillor Hamed and the suggestion “the council failed to support women.” This is false.
Irrespective of gender or family commitments, we have a responsibility to ensure ratepayer money is spent appropriately.
I want to reassure our ratepayers that there will be an open and transparent audit of Councillor expense reimbursement claims, including investigating allegations in relation to over claiming for child care.