News State NSW News ICAC fallout: commissioner resigns

ICAC fallout: commissioner resigns

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NSW State Emergency Service Commissioner Murray Kear has resigned, just over a fortnight after the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) found he had acted corruptly.

The corruption watchdog found Mr Kear sacked his deputy commissioner Tara McCarthy as payback for blowing the whistle on his friend, Deputy Commissioner Steven Pearce.

Emergency Services Minister Stuart Ayres resisted calls to immediately sack Mr Kear on the day the findings were handed down, saying due process needed to be followed.

Mr Kear had been on leave since the ICAC began investigating him, but Mr Ayres has now issued a statement saying he has tendered his resignation.

Ms McCarthy had alleged that Mr Pearce entered into dodgy contracts, misused SES funds to buy roof racks and brakes for his car, misused his SES credit card and fabricated diary notes.

The ICAC found that Mr Kear engaged in corrupt conduct by failing to investigate the allegations because of his friendship with Mr Pearce and sacking Ms McCarthy in reprisal.

In a statement last month following a recommendation that Mr Kear be dismissed, ICAC said both Mr Pearce and Mr Kear were known to each other prior to Mr Pearce applying to join the SES.

“Commissioner Kear sat on the original interview panel when Mr Pearce first applied to join the SES, but did not disclose a conflict of interest,” the ICAC stated.