Blair repairs water record
The NSW Government has been forced to correct the parliamentary record on prosecutions by WaterNSW.
Recent reports revealed WaterNSW has been investigated over claims it overstated statistics on how many breaches of water laws it had made.
NSW water minister Niall Blair says his department provided him with figures that were found “not to be accurate”.
Mr Blair said an ombudsmen’s report has found the inaccurate numbers were given with “no intention to mislead” and that no offences had been committed under the Ombudsman Act.
Mr Blair said WaterNSW has corrected the statistics and apologised unreservedly to the ombudsman.
“The information was provided in good faith with no intention to mislead,” he said.
Because the water minister also relied on the numbers for answers in parliament, he had to correct the record there as well.
Some have criticised WaterNSW for not making any prosecutions since allegations of water theft in the Murray Darling system were raised last year, but the authrotiy says it is still investigating.
“WaterNSW advises that while certain decisions may be conditional on further evidence being obtained, its expectation is that a decision on whether to commence prosecutions in a number of such cases will occur in coming days,” a spokesperson told reporters this week.