Tassie Corruption Body a Toothless Tiger: Research

New research has found the Integrity Commission Tasmania is one of the weakest anti-corruption bodies in Australia, with polling revealing nearly one in two Tasmanians distrust the current Commission’s ability to uncover and prevent misconduct in politics and public administration.

The report reveals that Tasmania’s anti-corruption body is one of the lowest funded in Australia, with some of the weakest powers, fewest investigations, and most restricted jurisdictions.

Key Findings:

  • Tasmania’s Integrity Commission has second lowest funding per capita in Australia
  • 48.5% of Tasmanians distrust the Integrity Commission’s ability to uncover misconduct
  • Commission has only referred two people for prosecution in its existence
  • Only 6 of 55 recommendations from the 2016 review to improve the Commission have been implemented
  • Tasmanian integrity commission has held fewer investigations than any other state anti-corruption body

According to the research, the Commission has a limited jurisdiction, cannot investigate matters covered by parliamentary privilege and can only investigate “public officers”. This, combined with limited resourcing, has led to other integrity bodies in Australia having completed between 3.6 and 12.4 times as many investigations per year as Tasmania’s Commission.

“There has never been a more important time for transparency and accountability in Tasmanian politics, but our research reveals the Integrity Commission Tasmania is all bark and no bite,” said Eloise Carr, Director of the Australia Institute Tasmania.

“In contrast with other integrity bodies around Australia, the Commission has never held a public inquiry or public hearing.

“In the wake of Ministerial resignations and a growing distrust in politics, Tasmanians deserve the same standards of integrity and accountability as the rest of Australia.

“For Tasmanians to have confidence in our Integrity Commission we recommend a broader jurisdiction, that the Commission hold public hearings and boosted funding.”

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