Sandy Bay Rowing Club – Alleged Conflict of Interest

Ms O’CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr ROCKLIFF

Last year, the Government that you now lead, approved a $150 000 election request made by your colleague, Madeleine Ogilvie, on behalf of the Sandy Bay Rowing Club. More than a year later, after questioning from the Greens in Estimates last Wednesday, your Minister for Sport and Recreation admitted that Ms Ogilvie’s daughter was a member of that club. That is a very clear conflict of interest and one that would never have been known by Tasmanians unless we had asked the question. Your minister justified this dodgy behavior by saying Ms Ogilvie had advised the Liberal Party of her conflict of interest.

We understand there are other similar examples regarding other Liberal members. Today, we are giving you an opportunity to come clean. Can you please provide a list to the House of the other conflict-of-interest disclosures made through the local communities facilities fund process?

ANSWER

Mr Speaker, I thank the member for her question. I am advised that the election promise made to the Sandy Bay Rowing Club during the 2021 election was part of a range of small one-off election promises made by local communities around the state. This is not unlike a raft of other promises others make. Just like any other election promise, the promises come to fruition dependent on two things: one, the party being elected to form government and enabled to enact the commitment; and two, the election promise being funded, included in the budget and the budget being agreed to by the parliament.

Ms O’Connor – Are you going to table the other conflict-of-interest disclosures?

Mr SPEAKER – Order.

Mr. ROCKLIFF – Only then was the funding provided to the Sandy Bay Rowing Club. We stand by that commitment. Ms O’Connor, if you have other –

Ms O’Connor – No, we are asking you.

Mr. ROCKLIFF – then please raise them.

Ms O’CONNOR – Point of order, Mr Speaker, standing order 45, relevance. We have just asked the Premier to table in the House the other conflict-of-interest disclosures –

Mr SPEAKER – I accept the point of relevance. You do not have to keep repeating the question. The Premier heard that.

Ms O’Connor – Did he?

Mr SPEAKER – I am sure the Premier will make that the point of relevance. He is still answering his question. He has not been answering it very long at all. Premiere?

Mr. ROCKLIFF – Ms O’Connor, these are election commitments. As I have said before a number of times publicly, prior to an election every elected member who has worked with their community over the course of the term of the parliament, or candidates, meet with local communities to assess their needs. There are a number of needs that I have seen across the community, in my 20 years of parliament. I made commitments in the 2002 election, 2006 election, 2010 election and was not elected. None of the commitments were able to be realized. These are election commitments that the public have a say on, and which are budgeted for.

Ms O’CONNOR – Point of order, standing order, 45 to relevance. We asked one question for one thing, and that was to table a conflict of interest register. One question.

Mr SPEAKER – There was a preamble with it. As you are aware, when members are allowed to go into a preamble then you open the question up to how ever the Premier wishes to answer that. He has now of course taken his seat.

If you wish to ask another question you are quite welcome down the track.

I think that is called jumping rather early, member for Franklin, but nevertheless, now that you are on your feet, the member for Franklin.

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