Contributing to the general air of incompetence and neglect surrounding the administration of the ACT, yesterday the Auditor-General delivered her findings into the operation of Rhodium Asset Solutions (slick website!), one of the dinky companies the Government has set up to sell services back to itself. In this case the management of car fleets for the ACT Government, ActewAGL, and others wanting to do business with them.
Amongst the highlights were a $460,000 sponsorship deal for the Brumbies in contravention of guidelines and common sense, a cash advance for the CEO, and $232,000 in corporate entertainment.
The Chief Minister has put out a media release explaining that the bad days (last period audited) are all behind them and the board has put more guidelines in place.
Which would be more reassuring if the old guidelines had been observed.
Back in July Richard Mulcahy was dancing around the Rhodium issues.
Interestingly no one is game to name this “Former CEO”.
UPDATED: Well the last Rhodium annual report to go online is for 2004-5 (which includes the period in question) and names the CEO as Deborah Clark.
FURTHER UPDATE: The Canberra Times has got its coverage coverage online with more details of Deborah Clark’s business methods including the number of staff and contractors who were related to her, and her lovely Lexus convertible being payed for by the Territory Owned Corporation. Matters have apparently been referred to the Police.
Here’s her picture from the annual report:
ANOTHER UPDATE: Liberal leader Bill Stefaniak is pulling out all the stops in linking this debacle to everything else that’s gone wrong with John Stanhope in charge.
MORE UPDATES: The Canberra Times has really warmed to the task today with a long piece on the reactions for the board which let Ms. Clark loot and pillage at will (members: ClubsACT president Bob Samarcq, Minter Ellison Consulting chief executive Margaret Coaldrake, media and publishing executive Ian Meikle, and Sydney investment banker Melanie Willis). The board were paid for their oversight of Rhodium during this time. There’s also a bio on Deborah Clark’s life and times. It will be interesting to see what sort of welcome she gets next time she pops into the Commonwealth Club.