State Govt’s jobs pro­gram to face par­lia­men­tary probe

Kalgoorlie Miner - - NEWS - Joanna De­la­lande

The State Govern­ment’s Lo­cal Projects, Lo­cal Jobs pro­gram is set to face par­lia­men­tary scru­tiny af­ter the Leg­isla­tive Coun­cil voted in favour of in­quir­ing into the scheme on Tues­day.

The Stand­ing Com­mit­tee on Es­ti­mates and Fi­nan­cial Oper­a­tions, chaired by Lib­eral Mem­ber for North Met­ro­pol­i­tan Tjorn Sibma, will launch an in­quiry into the pro­gram, for which the State Govern­ment spent $39 mil­lion in­stead of the pro­posed $22 mil­lion.

Mem­bers for the Min­ing and Pas­toral Re­gion Robin Chap­ple and Robin Scott were among those who sup­ported the mo­tion, which La­bor mem­ber for the re­gion Stephen Daw­son voted against. Mr Scott had pre­vi­ously crit­i­cised the pro­gram, in which only 24 per cent of the $39 mil­lion was spent in re­gional WA, say­ing State Govern­ment fund­ing to grass­roots pro- jects was city-cen­tric and flawed. In ex­press­ing her sup­port of the mo­tion, The Na­tion­als WA Mem­ber for Min­ing and Pas­toral Jac­qui Boy­dell said she was happy to sup­port the amend­ment and was “in­ter­ested to see, should the whole mo­tion get up and the es­ti­mates com­mit­tee does the in­quiry in this very wor­thy mo­tion, what the out­come of that will be”.

The com­mit­tee is to in­quire into the how each project was de­vel­oped, eval­u­ated and se­lected for fund­ing un­der the pro­gram, how pay­ments were made and ac­quit­ted to en­sure fi­nan­cial pro­bity and ac­count­abil­ity, how ac­tual or per­ceived con­flicts of in­ter­est were de­clared and man­aged, the num­ber of projects funded and, for each project, the amount of fund­ing pro­vided and num­ber of jobs cre­ated.

It will also eval­u­ate whether com­mu­nity, ed­u­ca­tion, arts and sport­ing groups within the State were af­forded an equal op­por­tu­nity to ac­cess the pro­gram.

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