ICAC begins Burwood Council inquiry

By Angela Dorizas

The general manager of Burwood Council in inner-west Sydney is accused of spending more than $44,000 of ratepayers’ money on surveillance of a man he believed was having an affair with his wife.

The general manager, Pat Romano, is the subject of an ICAC public inquiry into allegations of corrupt conduct at Burwood Council.

The ICAC is investigating whether Mr Romano and other council officers engaged in corrupt conduct in the course of their administration of staff and use of resources at the council.

On Monday, Counsel Assisting the Commission, Chris Ronalds, SC, said Mr Romano faced seven corruption allegations, including the use of council resources for surveillance, the construction of a new driveway at his home and the renovation of a block of flats owned by his wife.

Ms Ronalds said the general manager demonstrated a “possibly reckless attitude” in his position at council.

“The decisions and conduct of Mr Romano demonstrate a cavalier approach to such fundamental obligations to his employer and to the ratepayers and residents of Burwood Council who he is paid to serve,” Ms Ronalds said.

The inquiry continues.

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