Check your facts
IN RESPONSE to Simon Smithe’s commentary in last week’s Gazette, I would thank Mr Smithe to check his facts before mouthing off about payouts to former staff members of the Douglas Shire Council. While I will not comment on Mr Melchert’s dismissal as CEO of the former DSC, given the circumstances are on the public record, I do take issue with Mr. Smithe’s reference to me. It is widely known within the Douglas community that I did not in fact receive a ‘‘payout’’ from the former DSC. If you had bothered to check your facts Mr Smithe you will have ascertained that I was the subject of an illegal and cowardly act by four elected members of the former DSC who voted to terminate my employment at the very last meeting of the council before it was amalgamated. As a consequence, I commenced litigation in the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal against the successor body, Cairns Regional Council, and the four councillors responsible, alleging I was sacked in an act of political retribution for the dismissal 10 months earlier of Mr Melchert, a friend of the four councillors. After four years in court my litigation was successful against CRC to the extent that CRC was required to pay compensation for lost earnings on my part and hurt and humiliation amongst other things and also to pay my costs. This is hardly a payout Mr Smithe. As I suggest, check your facts in future lest you potentially be the subject of litigation yourself.