COUNCIL CEO ON DRINK DRIVING CHARGE
THE CEO of Whitsunday Regional Council will not be able to drive for the next four months after committing a mid-range drink-driving offence.
Scott James Waters was more than twice the legal limit when he was caught driving a grey Mitsubishi Pajero on Waterson Way, Airlie Beach, at 2.30am on March 8.
The 35-year-old admitted consuming four Corona’s and a number of glasses of red wine with dinner at a private function that night.
His reading was 0.132 per cent.
Mr Waters pleaded guilty to the charge in the Proserpine Magistrate’s Court on Monday where he was represented by a Brisbane-based solicitor from Human Asset Solutions Pty Ltd.
The solicitor told the court Mr Waters had stopped drinking at about midnight and only made the decision to drive because of warnings about developing Tropical Cyclone Hadi. Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist said the reading was “probably too far away from 0.05” to consider the statutory minimum penalties, but he conceded this was “very much something out of character”.
Mr Waters was fined $770 and disqualified from driving for four months.
After his court appearance, Mr Waters issued a statement saying he was very remorseful for his actions.
“I very much accept what I have done is wrong and wish to apologise to our mayor, councillors, staff, the community and my family for my actions,” he said.
“In my role as CEO my personal conduct must be of the highest level, I have made a mistake and can assure that this will never happen again.”
Mayor Jennifer Whitney said she was sure Mr Waters had “learned a lesson”. “While at no stage do I condone the behaviour, the CEO has followed internal protocol since the incident occurred,” she said.
A Council spokesperson said the car Mr Waters was driving was a company vehicle, which he had full use of in his own time. She said Council did have an alcohol policy in relation to company cars, but it applied to work hours only.
Mr Waters said there would be no impact on his ability to perform his role as CEO during the time period in which his licence was lost.
Meanwhile, President of the Whitsunday Regional Residents Association Ross Newell has already called on Mr Waters to resign or for the mayor to terminate his employment.
Cr Whitney said this would not be happening and that Mr Waters had already been dealt with in accordance with both Council policy and the law.
GUILTY: Council's CEO Scott Waters will not be able to drive for the next four months after pleading guilty to a mid-range drink-driving offence.