INDEPENDENT NEWS

Stalled Govt Commission So Far Cost $1.2m

Published: Thu 25 Nov 2004 02:52 PM
Stalled Govt Commission So Far Cost $1.2m
Thursday 25 Nov 2004
Dr Muriel Newman
Press Releases -- Crime & Justice
The Prime Minister has wasted over a million taxpayer dollars on her ill-advised commission of inquiry into police conduct, ACT Deputy Leader and Police Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman revealed for the first time today.
"Answers to my parliamentary questions have revealed that the now-stalled commission of inquiry into police conduct over the historical allegations of rape made earlier this year by Rotorua woman Louise Nicolas, has spent a staggering $1.245 million in the nine months to 11 November (PQ 16500)," Dr Newman said.
"This is significantly more than an earlier estimate by the Department of Internal Affairs that had put the cost of the commission at about $183,000 to July this year.
"The breakdown of the $1.245 million cost is: commissioner's fees $43,084, personnel $242,185, professional fees $268,012, legal fees $291,904, computer costs $104,153, `other' operating expenses $124,901, occupancy costs $109,364, office expenses $30,009, travel expenses $28,259, and depreciation and capital charges $3,212.
"With criminal investigations into the historical allegations having already been re-opened by the police before the Prime Minister announced Labour's inquiry in February, the commission was doomed from the start. Any matters related in any way at all to the alleged offences raised by the commissioners would invariably have been deemed to be sub-judice.
Since the Prime Minister is very experienced in how matters that are sub-judice cannot be further scrutinised, she should have put her inquiry on the back-burner until the police investigation was complete, and saved the taxpayer $1.245 million," said Dr Newman.
ENDS
For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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