Local government minister won’t be drawn on Riley situation

NSW local government minister Gabrielle Upton.
NSW local government minister Gabrielle Upton.

The Office of Local Government has refused to comment on whether it will enquire about the circumstances surrounding the shock departure of former general manager Mark Riley from Dubbo Regional Council.

More than a week after Mr Riley left the job, questions continue to be asked about the reasons why it was necessary for a ‘mutual written agreement’ to be put in place.

Mr Riley left the job on Thursday, November 23, and four days later council finalised his departure in a confidential meeting.

Chris Devitt filled the job for a week before Michael McMahon took on the role of interim general manager on Friday, December 1.

It is believed Mr Riley initially vacated his role after being approached by a delegation of councillors at the same time the Dubbo Day Awards were taking place.

The Office of Local Government does not comment publicly on complaints or matters it may or may not be investigating.

Office of Local Government spokeswoman

The Daily Liberal understands correspondence, including community questions and concerns, has been forwarded to the office of Minister for Local Government Gabrielle Upton.

But when we approached the minister’s office for reaction, they were giving little away.

“The Office of Local Government is aware of the departure of Dubbo Regional Council general manager Mark Riley. The recruitment and termination of staff are matters for the council,” the spokeswoman said.

“As with any other council employees, it would not be appropriate for the council or any other person to disclose information about the circumstances surrounding the termination of a general manager’s employment.

“Such information, by its nature, is confidential and its disclosure by any council official could potentially constitute a breach of the council’s code of conduct.

“The Office of Local Government does not comment publicly on complaints or matters it may or may not be investigating.”