$500,000 'deals for mates'

Gavin Austin

Gavin Austin

THE state's corruption watchdog has accused two hospital bosses of using their positions to secure jobs for family members and business associates.

Jane Holden

Jane Holden

Tasmanian Health Organisation North-West chief executive Gavin Austin told the Commission that he and former Royal Hobart Hospital boss Jane Holden were part of a ``dream team''.

But in a report tabled in Parliament yesterday, the commission said the pair's misconduct had cost taxpayers more than $500,000.

The report said the figure did not include the salaries paid to family members as employees, the effect on the ethical culture of the agencies involved, poor quality work, and lost opportunities for Tasmanians.

The report said Ms Holden, who was then chief executive of the North-West Area Health Service, had not made a conflict of interest declaration in 2010 when she hired Mr Austin, her former colleague, as finance director.

The commission said Mr Austin's selection report included no statements against the selection criteria, no referee reports, and no evidence of any job interview.

It said he was offered ``very generous'' employment conditions, some of which required approvals for which there was no evidence, and others which were not authorised.

The commission said the appointment appeared to set a tone for future employment practices in the North-West, which continued after Ms Holden left for THO South and Mr Austin assumed her leadership role.

Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide