On 23 July, 2014, Larry Whipper voted in favour of implementing a Fraud and Corruption Prevention policy with strict guidelines on councillor transparency and accountability. At the time, Larry was obliged to study the policy, and only when he absolutely knew what was expected of himself and other councillors, was he able to “sign off” on the motion to adopt the policy, one that was submitted in open council .
Even if Larry wasn’t able to read the whole document (which was presented to councillors as an agenda item days before the actual meeting), he surely must’ve seen the one short paragraph and four short sentences that follow –
(After all, he’d already been a councillor for over FIFTEEN-YEARS, and surely must’ve known the rules by then.)
(The) revised Fraud and Corruption Prevention Policy 1.48 assists in building a corruption resistant culture at Council by promoting ethical behaviour and encouraging accountability and transparency in Council processes and dealings with external parties. Wingecarribee Shire Council will not tolerate corrupt conduct by employees, Councillors or external parties and is committed to:
1. Minimising the opportunities for corrupt conduct by employees, members of the public, Councillors, contractors and clients;
2. Detecting, investigating and disciplining/prosecuting corrupt conduct;
3. Reporting corrupt conduct to appropriate external authorities;
4. Developing and implementing a fraud and corruption risk assessment strategy to assist in the identification and management of corruption risks across Council.
Questions to Councillor Larry Whipper –
1. It’s well known the Wingecarribee Shire Council is one of the most corrupt in Australia. How were you able to vote in favour of a robust set of rules governing council and councillor behaviour back in 2014, but do nothing to address the culture of criminality that pervades our beloved shire since then?
2. Part of the corruption policy adopted by council includes the reporting of corrupt conduct by councillors and employees of the organisation. But when I contacted you recently about council corruption (backed up with lots of documentary evidence), you said you didn’t want to see it. Why would you tell me this – when you signed off on a policy back in 2014 that specifically states that council officials like yourself must take all reports of corruption seriously, and/or “report corrupt conduct to appropriate external authorities”? Why did you say, “I don’t want to know about it” when I informed you of your obligation to act upon my very serious accusations of political corruption? Why would you give me the brush off, Larry? Have you been bought and paid for by criminals?
3. From the time he was elected councillor in 2012, John Uliana was subjected to an illegal witch-hunt for the next 4 years of his term. A number of official complaints about his properties were fabricated (it can now be proved), and he was exposed to abuse of power by council officials concerning issues that never amounted to anything. The council spent over $1,000,000 pursuing the vexatious action, and when the council had the chance to bring Uliana to account as part of their (malicious) court action against Paul O’Shannassy in the Supreme Court of NSW, it failed to provide any evidence of Councillor Uliana’s misconduct or illegal behaviour. Indeed, John Uliana wasn’t even mentioned throughout the Supreme Court proceedings, because the spurious charges were trumped up in an attempt to force him from council. During a council meeting on 2 April, 2014, you put a question to senior management concerning the cost of the witch-hunt against Clr Uliana, knowing full well there was an illegal attempt to have the councillor sacked. Why haven’t you pursued the matter further in the last four years? Were you induced to stay quiet about the vendetta against Uliana, with either cash or gratuities, or both? With the advent of the Fraud and Corruption Prevention policy a few months later, why didn’t you follow the strict rules of the policy and “report corrupt conduct to appropriate external authorities”? Were you bullied and intimidated into keeping quiet with threats to your political career? Were you threatened with exposure for previous misconduct and corruption on your part, forcing you to cease speaking out against the Uliana witch-hunt?
4. How can you have an online persona that promotes so many wonderful causes – when you fail to do anything about the entrenched corruption that holds our community hostage?
5. You know full well that Charles Frederick Johns is a notorious criminal, standover man and fixer in the community. When I told you that he (along with dodgy officers at the Southern Highlands Police District) had me convicted for Stalking and Intimidation using fabricated evidence and outlandish lies, you completely ignored me. As an elected representative of the community, isn’t it your duty to make sure that such miscarriages of justice don’t take place in your shire, especially considering Charlie Johns has been disrupting council meetings for years, and is well known for long-term criminal behaviour? Is Charlie Johns protected by a criminal element in the community that holds sway over you as a councillor? Are they bribing you to keep quiet because “They have something on you”?
6. Have you ever been threatened with defamation? If so, by whom? And how many times?
7. Have you ever identified corrupt conduct at council in the last 20 years as an elected representative – and have NOT reported it?
8. Do you plan to again run for council in 2020, and if so, will you be maintaining a stance of “turning a blind eye to corruption” for the next four years as well?
9. I contacted you in 2015 about corruption at the local community radio station – Highland FM. Initially, you agreed the radio station had indeed been corrupt for many years, and you appeared to be supportive of my attempts to hold the crooked board to account. Then all of sudden, you just stopped responding to my pleas of support (as an elected representative of the community). A community station is an important part of the shire, especially when you have (the long term toadie to crooks), Graham Day, completely selling out the community on commercial radio. Why did you stop supporting my attempt to hold criminals to account, especially regarding a community radio station that’s the voice of the shire? If Highland FM was actually owned and operated by the community for the last 30 years, corruption wouldn’t have been able to take such an entrenched hold. Didn’t you feel in someway responsible for not acting on my allegations of corruption (about the station), that were also backed up by lots and lots of proof? Do you want a toxic and dysfunctional community radio station, so that announcers are restricted from properly holding the council to account for malfeasance and corruption, because the management of the station is as equally corrupt? After all, a muzzled local radio station would allow a revolving door of the same corrupt councillors term after term, and decade after decade. Is that why you failed to support me in holding Highland FM to account?
10. What the hell’s going on, Larry? How have you been so easily suborned? George Harrison, hippy love, the Beatles, the youth of the day, mental health issues, they’re all great causes to promote, but how on earth can you support philanthropic endeavours – when the corruption at council is catastrophic?
11. I called you out for corruption over a month ago, and instead of using proper protocol and procedure to address my serious charges, you attempted to shoot the whistleblower. As is my right, I used one of your Facebook photos in my post that called your integrity into question, and the first thing you did was try and force me to take the post down (due to copyright issues). At no stage did you address my serious allegations of corruption in our initial correspondence. When I failed to “take down the photo” you had the photographer (and owner) of the picture contact me, and with veiled threats, he told me to remove his picture from the FB posting or else. I refused, based on my right as a satirist and journalist to use photos that are covered under Fair Use legislation. When those two strategies failed to have the negative post removed, you contacted Facebook and told them you were a victim of bullying and harassment (which was a lie). Facebook then suspended my account for 24 hours based on a fabricated report by yourself (or other corrupt individuals associated with you). After I appealed the suspension, Facebook wrote to me and said they were WRONG! I hadn’t bullied or harassed anyone. They apologised profusely, and said my posting about Larry Whipper’s corruption didn’t in anyway contravene their Community Standards Policy. So when those three attempts to shut me down had failed, you then subjected me to private messages calling into question my mental health, pretending that you cared, and offering your support in dealing with what was (according to you, a serious mental breakdown). You simply dismissed my serious accusations of your illegal conduct, and you tried to label me as a crackpot, a nutcase, a loony. So here’s some questions for you, Larry. Why did you try and shoot me as a whistleblowing journalist rather than address my very serious allegations of your conduct as a councillor? How can you be taken seriously as a community ambassador for mental health issues, when you try and smear someone with having mental health issues in an attempt to cover up your own wrongdoing? Pru Goward has done nothing to address rampant and unchecked corruption at WSC for the last four years, but she’s now campaigning for election as a wonderful advocate of the community. Is that why you and Pru have involved yourself with Ben Quilty’s latest mental health awareness campaign, so that it will help generate positive publicity for you both? After all, yourself and Pru are both guilty of turning a blind eye to council corruption for years and years. Were you the person who contacted Facebook with a fake complaint that saw my account suspended for 24 hours? Or was it someone more computer savvy like the notorious criminal, Charlie Johns, who’s a well known poison pen letter writer and serial complainer (about anyone who stands in the way of his criminal overlords like Nick Campbell-Jones and Malcolm Murray)? Have you actually read the WSC Fraud and Corruption Prevention Policy, one you voted to adopt back in 2014? Why did you go to so much trouble to have my allegations of your corruption removed from Facebook, while NOT addressing my serious accusations? Surely you can prove that my allegations of your corruption are demonstrably wrong? Or can’t you? Have you familiarised yourself with the Councillors’ Code of Conduct manual? Is it a true statement when I say that your response to my accusations of corruption does NOT give you the right to ignore my allegations, indeed, code of conduct requirements are adamant that you HAVE TO take my allegations seriously, and deal with them with proper protocol and procedure? Would you like me to send you a copy of my Code of Conduct requirements manual (as legislated)? I’d be happy to highlight the passages that allude to how councillors SHOULD respond to serious allegations of corruption (when it's backed backed up by documentary evidence).
12. Would you be willing to be interviewed by me on camera, a video that would be streamed live online with no editing?
13. If not, why not?
14. Have you been given instructions by the corrupt general manager at Wingecarribee Shire Council to NEVER engage the media unless given the go-ahead to do so?
15. Have you ever committed a crime?
16. Have you ever been the subject of Code of Conduct violations brought against you by members of the community?
17. Are you aware that the criminal senior counsel, Nick Wilton, NEVER properly deals with staff complaints against management and complaints about councillor code of conduct violations (they’re simply left in limbo which constitutes systemic corruption)?
18. Would you really have the community believe the council is squeaky clean and absolutely free of toxicity, dysfunction and criminal conduct (when credible rumours of corruption have been circulating throughout the community for decades)? And there's also the trove of documentary evdience I've got to show you.
19. For the last 20 years of representing the community at council level (only for council corruption to flourish in the last two decades), aren’t you ashamed of turning a blind eye to such rampant corruption that’s plainly obvious in all aspects of council administration?
20. Are you engaging in a “shoot the whistleblower” campaign, because to have the council exposed for long-term systemic corruption would tarnish your 20 year career as a local politician, and force you from politics forever?
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