Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Letter on party and member support funding

Letter to Parliamentary Service about party and member support funding

21 February 2019: On 4 December 2018, the Auditor-General received a request to look into claims that a staff member in Hon Maggie Barry’s office was asked to carry out political party work during work hours. We have written to Parliamentary Service with our response...

18 February 2019

Rafael Gonzalez-Montero
General Manager
Parliamentary Service
Parliament Buildings
Private Bag 18041
Wellington 6160

Dear Rafael

Allegations concerning possible misuse of party and member support funding

As you are aware, my Office has received correspondence asking that we look into claims that a staff member in the office of a member of Parliament was asked to carry out political party work during work hours. These claims were also referred to in various media articles in December last year.

The claims are of interest to me because they concern the use of party and member support funding, which is one of the appropriations in Vote Parliamentary Service. Any concerns about the use of appropriations fall directly within my mandate as Controller and Auditor-General.

In order to decide what investigation, if any, my Office needs to carry out into this matter, my staff have reviewed the information provided by the correspondent and have also met with senior personnel from the Parliamentary Service to find out what steps the Parliamentary Service has taken in response to the claims.

Based on discussions with your staff, my understanding is that the Parliamentary Service was made aware of the concerns that have been raised with us about staff being asked to do political party work during work hours. However, the concerns were raised in the context of a broader investigation into an employment matter, and have therefore so far been considered only in that context. My understanding is that a specific investigation into whether there has been a breach of the appropriation has not yet been carried out.

We therefore consider that further investigation into the concerns is necessary. After discussions with staff from your office, we have decided that the most appropriate course of action is for the Parliamentary Service to carry out that investigation.

I do not intend to inquire further into this matter at this stage. However, depending on the outcome of the Parliamentary Service’s investigation, I may decide that further work by my Office is warranted. I would be grateful therefore if you would let me know the outcome of your investigation.

Because of the level of public interest in the matters raised, we will publish this letter on our website.

Yours sincerely

John Ryan
Controller and Auditor-General

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

New Reports: Flood Risk From Rain And Sea Under Climate Change

One report looks at what would happen when rivers are flooded by heavy rain and storms, while the other examines flooding exposure in coastal and harbour areas and how that might change with sea-level rise.

Their findings show that across the country almost 700,000 people and 411,516 buildings worth $135 billion are presently exposed to river flooding in the event of extreme weather events...

There is near certainty that the sea will rise 20-30 cm by 2040. By the end of the century, depending on whether global greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, it could rise by between 0.5 to 1.1 m, which could add an additional 116,000 people exposed to extreme coastal storm flooding. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Commerce Commission Fuel Report

The interim Commerce Commission report on the fuel industry will do nothing to endear the major oil companies to the New Zealand public... More>>


Emergency Govt Bill: Overriding Local Licensing For The Rugby

“It’s pretty clear some clubs are having difficulty persuading their district licensing committees to grant a special licence to extend their hours for this obviously special event, and so it makes sense for Parliament to allow clubs to meet a community desire." More>>


Leaving Contract Early: KiwiBuild Programme Losing Another Top Boss

Ms O'Sullivan began a six-month contract as head of KiwiBuild Commercial in February, but the Housing Ministry has confirmed she has resigned and will depart a month early to take up a new job. More>>


Proposed National Policy Statement: Helping Our Cities Grow Up And Out

“We need a new approach to planning that allows our cities to grow up, especially in city centres and around transport connections. We also have to allow cities to expand in a way that protects our special heritage areas, the natural environment and highly productive land." More>>


Ombudsman's Report: Ngāpuhi Elder 'Shocked' By Conditions At Ngawha Prison

A prominent Ngāpuhi elder is shocked to find inmates at Ngawha Prison are denied water and forced to relieve themselves in the exercise yard... Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier has released a report highly critical of conditions at the Northland prison. More>>


Promises: Independent Election Policy Costing Unit A Step Closer

The creation of an entity to provide political parties with independent and non-partisan policy costings is a step closer today, according to Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Associate Finance Minister James Shaw. More>>


School's In: Primary And Intermediate Principals Accept New Offer

Primary and intermediate school principals have voted to accept a new settlement from the Ministry of Education, which includes entrenched pay parity with secondary principals. More>>


IPCA On 'Rawshark' Investigation: Multiple Police Failings In Hager Searches Confirmed

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that the Police's unlawful search of Nicky Hager's property in October 2014 resulted from an unwitting neglect of duty and did not amount to misconduct by any individual officer... More>>


Broadcasting Standards: Decisions On Coverage Of Mosque Attacks

The Authority upheld one of these complaints, finding that the use of extensive excerpts from the alleged attacker’s livestream video on Sky News New Zealand had the potential to cause significant distress to audiences in New Zealand, and particularly to the family and friends of victims, and the wider Muslim community. More>>




InfoPages News Channels