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Tuesday, October 19, 2021

More questions for Whittlesea Council

Further questions about governance matters at Whittlesea City Council have arisen following the publication of The Local Paper on July 14.

The Local Paper sent this email to Whittlesea Council CEO Craig Lloyd on Saturday (July 17). Copies have been sent to Administrators Lydia Wilson, Peita Duncan and Chris Eddy.

The email reads:

We note the removal of the name of Ms Kristi High alongside the title of Executive Manager – Public Affairs on the City of Whittlesea website.

Could you please explain? Has Ms High left the employ of the City of Whittlesea? If so, is this connected with the reports in The Local Paper on Wednesday, July 14, 2021, regarding governance matters?

Please do not ignore our requests for answers to our important questions, as you have previously done. It only creates a hostile Council-media environment, which we have said from the start, we wish to avoid.

Please explain why there has been no comment from Council, its CEO and its Administrators, regarding this important matter to date. Why has there been no comment to the public? Why have media releases stopped being sent to The Local Paper? Why has paid advertising stopped to The Local Paper (but continued with the Whittlesea Review and Northern Star Weekly)?

Is the Whittlesea City Council attempting to financially punish The Local Paper for revealing a potential governance failure at the municipality? Is the City of Whittlesea attempting to financially punish The Local Paper for expressing editorial opinion that was unfavourable to Council’s image?

Is Whittlesea Council accepting of the role of civic journalism, which includes balanced reporting of potential government failures? At all times, The Local Paper has offered opportunities to the CEO, its Administrators, and Communications/Media Department for comment.