Gladys Berejiklian gave Daryl Maguire’s constituency $ 40,000 from the Discretionary...

Gladys Berejiklian gave Daryl Maguire’s constituency $ 40,000 from the Discretionary...
Gladys Berejiklian gave Daryl Maguire’s constituency $ 40,000 from the Discretionary...
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“It would have been more accurate to say that she confirmed that she was satisfied with the proposed projects. Because the truth is, she did not approve any payment under the scholarship program, ”said Ms. Lau.

She said it was actually the job of the head of the local government office, Tim Hurst, to approve the funding, a claim that Mr. Hurst had previously contradicted in his own evidence prior to the investigation.

Ms Berejiklian on Thursday distanced herself from the program launched in 2016 by the Baird government to fund merged councils by stating that she had not signed them.

Ms Berejiklian’s former chief of staff, Sarah Cruickshank, who testified on allegations of wrongdoing against Mr Maguire at an independent anti-corruption Commission hearing earlier this month, was also facing the House of Lords investigation.

Ms. Cruickshank was not accused of any wrongdoing.

Speaking to Ms. Cruickshank towards the end of the morning hearing, Labor’s Courtney Houssos said, “Wagga electorate received six awards from the Prime Minister’s Discretionary Fund totaling $ 40,536 in 2017-18.”

“Are you aware of the Prime Minister’s relationship with Daryl Maguire prior to approving these funds?” Ms. Houssos asked, to which Ms. Cruickshank replied, “No, I am not.”

Sarah Cruickshank, former Chief of Staff to Premier Gladys Berejiklian.Recognition:Kate Geraghty

Ms. Cruickshank went on to qualify that she may not necessarily have been aware of any disclosures, as she believed they could be addressed directly to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Ms. Berejiklian’s office and department were managed by the Herold about the type of subsidy and whether information was provided.

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Ms Cruickshank had previously confirmed at the hearing that the fund was being managed at the Prime Minister’s discretion.

Labor’s John Graham told Ms. Cruickshank that a statement should have been made if a conflict of interest had arisen.

Ms. Cruickshank replied that she was not sure whether this was a requirement for the discretionary fund or not, but it sounded “plausible”.

“I think you are probably right,” she said.

There’s more to come

Angus Thompson is an Urban Affairs reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald.

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