Government

Budget bungle continues

This year's Budget bungle continues, with the investigation into the leak of Treasury material having to be halted. 

The drama of the Budget leak continues, with the investigation being scrapped and restarted after a conflict of interest was identified.

On Wednesday, State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes announced he had terminated the investigation into how Budget-sensitive material was accessed at the Treasury.

Hughes said the integrity of the investigation, led by Murray Jack, had been compromised after a member if the investigation team failed to declare a conflict of interest.

Hughes said he decided to stop the investigation, and begin a new probe, with a new head.

“Near enough is not good enough when it comes to integrity.”

He was not prepared to continue with the initial investigation and risk any possibility of compromise.

“Starting the investigation again is the right thing to do,” Hughes said. “Near enough is not good enough when it comes to integrity.”

The investigation was set up to address concerns about the security of the Treasury’s Budget process, after the National Party managed to access documents ahead of their release.

Jenn Bestwick has been appointed to lead the fresh investigation, and the terms of reference remain the same.

Hughes said he expected the total cost of the inquiry, including the new investigation, would be completed within or near the original budget of $250,000. The new investigation is expected to report at the end of February.

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