CITY of Perth Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi has escaped disqualification, with the State Administrative Tribunal suspending her for seven months starting this Friday.
The Tribunal handed its decision down late yesterday.
Earlier this year, the Tribunal found Ms Scaffidi had breached the Local Government Act 45 times, which led to an 18 month disqualification, and Ms Scaffidi appealed.
The Court of Appeals in November reversed the ruling on 26 breaches of the Act, but Ms Scaffidi did not appeal the remaining 19.
Ms Scaffidi, who is already on suspension along with the rest of the Perth council, took to Twitter to comment on the latest development in the saga.
“I am very pleased to advise that…(the Tribunal) rejected the State’s case that I should be disqualified from holding office,” she wrote.
“In rejecting the State’s case, the Tribunal upheld the submissions made….. to the effect that my breaches, while serious were not in the upper range of seriousness.”
The Tribunal found Ms Scaffidi had “displayed considerable remorse” and [was] not “simply expressing sorrow or regret” and had “a genuine understanding of the serious breaches, the reason for the application to the Tribunal, the purpose of the disclosure requirements in the Act and the importance of complying with them.”
Ms Scaffidi said unless the State appealed, the matter is “now at an end”.
“Throughout this process I have been subjected to considerable public pressure, particularly from the Premier and the Minister, to resign (and thereby abandon my pursuit of my democratic right to have the matter dealt with in accordance with the law),” Ms Scaffidi tweeted.
“Yesterday’s decision, and particularly the Tribunal’s findings, completely vindicate my refusal to buckle to that pressure.”
In another Tweet, Ms Scaffidi said she was presently volunteering at a youth leadership (LEAP) summer school in Los Angeles, USA and was not available to comment further.