Corruption and Crime Commission Finalises Investigation
The City of Melville has welcomed a recent notification by the Corruption and Crime Commission (CCC) clearing City Officer Mr Todd Cahoon, Manager Healthy Melville, of allegations he engaged in serious misconduct and received a benefit in relation to his work.
Click here or see below to read the CCC's online notification:
CCC FINALISES INVESTIGATION INTO A PUBLIC OFFICER AT THE CITY OF MELVILLE
The Corruption and Crime Commission (CCC) has investigated allegations that Mr Todd Cahoon, City of Melville's Manager of Health and Leisure Services, had engaged in serious misconduct and received a benefit by influencing the progression of a proposed Wave Park Group project.
Many of the allegations have been widely discussed in the media and previously assessed by the Public Sector Commission.
Based on CCC enquiries, Mr Cahoon appears to have been aware of, and appropriately declared, his conflict-of-interest in the Wave Park Group to the appropriate people at the City of Melville. There is no evidence of him attempting to disguise his interest.
The CCC has finalised its investigation and informed the City of Melville that based on the evidence currently available, it has not formed an opinion of serious misconduct by any public officer under the Corruption, Crime and Misconduct Act 2003.
City of Melville Chief Executive Officer Dr Shayne Silcox said while he was satisfied the City’s two assessments were consistent with the CCC’s assessment of the matter, he hoped the outcome of the investigation would help the officer in some small way to overcome the personal impacts he had suffered.
“I would however like to highlight that the lack of procedural fairness afforded to Mr Cahoon has been absolutely unacceptable and I personally believe it’s about time the civil was put back into society!” Dr Silcox said.
“While officers are always open to scrutiny in everything they do, I have found the manner in which particular groups have chosen to target and publicly attack an individual who is an officer at the City but also a member of the community with family and friends across this City, to be abhorrent and self-serving.
“As CEO I will be raising the issue within the Local Government Sector with all the necessary agencies to see what can be done to ensure procedural fairness and to protect officers now and in the future from being subjected to bullying and harassment from the public, simply due to their role in public service.
“I will also be seeking to understand under s. 25(5) of the Corruption, Crime and Misconduct Act 2003, whether the malicious and reckless reporting of allegations that we have seen qualifies as serious misconduct, which would result in a penalty of imprisonment for 3 years and a fine of $60,000.
“Despite the fact that no-one had investigated the matter, key individuals saw it completely appropriate for them to publicly make claims and damage the reputation of an individual and this great City, by widely promoting unsubstantiated and damaging claims in public forums earlier this year.
“As a result, I saw it appropriate to call in an accredited service provider of Human Resources investigations for the State Government, who had worked on complex and sensitive internal investigations both for the WA Police and the CCC, to conduct an independent third party investigation.
“Once the City’s internal and external reviews had been completed, the City provided the information voluntarily to the Public Sector Commission (PSC), The Corruption and Crime Commission (CCC) and the Department of Local Government and Communities.
“The PSC assessed the allegations and concluded they do not constitute minor misconduct as defined within s. 4(d) of the Corruption, Crime and Misconduct Act 2003 (CCM Act).
“The CCC has also carefully considered the information provided by the City and assessed that the alleged conduct does not meet the definition of serious misconduct within the meaning of the Corruption, Crime and Misconduct Act 2003. Consequently the Commission has no jurisdiction to take further action.
“As CEO I hope the media and the community understand the personal impacts, stress and trauma, that are caused when unfounded and unsubstantiated allegations are bandied around recklessly.
“Again I question why those who made the allegations broadcast them so widely without appropriate due process of confidentially. Their actions seemed on the face of it to be working to discredit the City and its officers for their own political gain and agenda.”
City of Melville Mayor Russell Aubrey said with the CCC investigation and assessment now finalised he was at last to able express his disgust at those members of the anti-Wave Park group that chose to publicly defame an officer of the City prior to a proper and just investigation of the matter.
“Using the professional status of a staff member and any public servant as cannon fodder for personal or political gain is unacceptable from any perspective. Its also cast the integrity of the City and its processes under unwarranted suspicion and the entire Melville community has a right to an apology after being misled in this malicious manner,” said Mayor Aubrey.
“One can only imagine the extreme distress this matter has caused to the staff member, his wife and young children all of whom live work and play in the very same community.”