Freedom of Information, Privacy Protection & Public Interest Disclosures in the Northern Territory : annual report 2011-2012
Commissioner for Information and Public Interest Disclosures annual report 2011 - 12
Northern Territory. Commissioner for Information and Public Interest Disclosures
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Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).
Whistle blowing; Law and Legislation; Annual report; Periodicals
Northern Territory Government
Commissioner for Information and Public Interest Disclosures annual report; Annual Report
Office of the Information Commissioner
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Northern Territory Government
Page 18 on behalf of the council member involved, the Commissioner identified failings in the councils governance, management and support. The Commissioner made recommendations for change to ensure the provision of ongoing training and support for elected members in corporate governance addressing in particular the Code of Conduct and conflict of interest issues. Further recommendations were made for the council to review the current processes for lease management oversight to ensure that the obligations placed on the council and lessees are complied with. The Chief Executive in this matter was very proactive in managing the changes required, continually updating the Commissioner on the progress and success of each element. Matter 7 OCPID investigated an allegation that two public officers sought and accepted gifts of electrical appliances from a period contract holder to help furnish a new office. The investigation revealed that the improper conduct had in fact occurred, with the officers requesting, and the contractor supplying, goods valued at over $1,000.00 without submitting an invoice for payment. Both officers tendered their resignations during the investigation process. The Commissioner made recommendations for change within the organisation in respect to the gifts and benefits policy and general training of staff relating to conflicts of interest. This matter formed a part of a referral to the Police Commissioner and is currently under investigation. Matter 8 OCPID investigated allegations that public officers asked contractors to submit multiple invoices for the one job in order to subvert the tier levels of procurement. This practice, known as invoice splitting enables the contractor to break up a large job into smaller invoices, meaning that only one quote is required to authorise payments, instead of having to go through the full procurement process. The investigation revealed that this was a common practice and those involved justified their actions by saying that the work was done quicker and there was no cost to government. While the work may, in fact, have been completed more quickly, the lack of a competitive procurement process did not allow for the best value for money process to be engaged. The Commissioner recommended that controls be put in place to stop this action from recurring, and that the policies and procedures in the organisation be reviewed and strengthened. This matter formed a part of a referral to the Police Commissioner and is currently under investigation.
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