THE Lisa Scaffidi saga could drag on well into the new year after attempts to have it resolved by Christmas failed today.
State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) Judge Tim Sharp refused during a directions hearing to order a mediation session between Ms Scaffidi’s lawyer Steven Penglis and state lawyer Carol Thatcher .
Mr Sharp said he believed both parties would not be able to reach an outcome that way.
Instead, a two-day penalty hearing was agreed to take place at about the end of January or the beginning of February, in which evidence will be re-heard in what is effectively a “fresh start”.
A decision on the matter may not be made until May, with up to three months permitted.
Both parties now have 14 days each to identity what evidence they will present at the new hearing.
Today’s resolution means the saga will drag on into its third year.
Mr Penglis had pushed for mediation between parties to take place before the Christmas break to ensure a decision on a penalty for Ms Scaffidi was made swiftly.
SAT found earlier this year Ms Scaffidi had breached the Local Government Act 45 times, which led to an 18 month disqualification, and Ms Scaffidi appealed.
Ms Scaffidi stood down from her duties as Lord Mayor pending the outcome.
The Court of Appeals in November reversed the ruling on 26 of them, but Ms Scaffidi did not appeal the remaining 19.
Mr Penglis said this Thursday would mark three months that Ms Scaffidi had been suspended.