Cessnock Council court case starts today
Updated May 07, 2012 11:08:50 from ABC Newcastle
Hearing begins in the case that has divided Cessnock Council over the future of its embattled General Manager.
The New South Wales Supreme Court will today begin hearing a case that has divided Cessnock Council over the future of its embattled General Manager.
Cessnock Mayor Alison Davey instigated the action against 10 councillors to scuttle their attempts to oust General Manager Lea Rosser.
The General Manager has clashed with councillors over her appointment of a new senior management team not long after taking up the top job in 2010.
Adding fuel to the fire has been allegations made to the Independent Commission Against Corruption by the Mayor about people trying to destabilise the council.
Those individuals are expected to be named when affidavits are presented in court today.
Greens Councillor James Ryan says taking councillors to court to stop them performing their civic duties is unprecedented.
“It’s very strange having the majority of councillors in this case 10 of the 13 councillors being prevented from voting by the council,” he said.
Councillor Ryan says not only are ratepayers angry that they are footing the bill for the court action, but they want council to get on with its job of running the city.
“There’s no doubt in my mind when you’ve got an organisation like council, the whole organisation needs to operate on the basis of consultation and moving forward as a team and that clearly is not happening in Cessnock at the moment,” he said.
“We’ve got to get back on track so that we can provide good services for the people of Cessnock.”
The court case is expected to run for several days.