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Australia Sydney news: Secret files on John Barilaro's appointment to US trade role to be made public

00:51  01 august  2022
00:51  01 august  2022 Source:   abc.net.au

Barilaro roadshow keeps crashing Perrottet's trade mission

  Barilaro roadshow keeps crashing Perrottet's trade mission The premier may be fed up with the Barilaro affair overshadowing his Asia trip, but the arrival in India on Friday of his deputy, Stuart Ayres, will not help to switch the focus.The showroom is more curated modern museum than car yard, and part of the display is the company's range of green hydrogen-fuelled vehicles.

Attention has turned to Stuart Ayres, left, and his role in the appointment of John Barilaro, centre, to the US trade job. (Supplied) © Provided by ABC NEWS Attention has turned to Stuart Ayres, left, and his role in the appointment of John Barilaro, centre, to the US trade job. (Supplied)

Here's what you need to know this morning.

More secret files on US trade role to be made public

Secret government documents relating to John Barilaro's appointment to a lucrative trade role in New York are set to be made public this morning.

Last week, the government agreed to stop the documents being deemed privileged, after the opposition fought to have them released into the public domain.

The documents are set to put the government under further pressure over the controversy that has been escalating for weeks.

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The ABC understands there is growing frustration within the government that Premier Dominic Perrottet isn't taking decisive action, while there are also ongoing questions over Trade Minister Stuart Ayres' involvement and whether he misled parliament.

Mr Barilaro is no longer taking the job and will front a parliamentary inquiry into his appointment next week on Monday, August 8.

This week, Investment NSW CEO Amy Brown will front the inquiry for the second time.

Mr Ayres has released a statement on his Facebook page overnight, defending his actions in the controversy.

Mr Ayres said he had made decisions placing the interests of the community first.

"While I respected Mr Barilaro in his role as deputy premier, leader of the National Party and his passionate (and at times excessive) advocacy of regional NSW, I don’t think we ever called each other close friends," he said.

Former staffer tells inquiry John Barilaro lined up New York role before his retirement

  Former staffer tells inquiry John Barilaro lined up New York role before his retirement Former deputy premier John Barilaro allegedly told his ex-chief of staff he would get the NSW government to put a new trade position in New York for when he "gets out of this place", an inquiry hears.Mark Connell this morning made a statement to the parliamentary inquiry investigating Mr Barilaro's controversial appointment, which comes with a $500,000 annual salary package and is based in New York.

"Every action I have taken has been to remove politics from the recruitment of these roles and put the people of NSW first."

Sydney Metro faces serious risks, documents show

The Sydney Metro public transport project faces serious risks that have been revealed in a confidential internal document, the NSW opposition has warned.

NSW Shadow Minister for Transport Jo Haylen said the document, prepared by Sydney Metro officials, shows the project's core strategic objectives are now at risk because of a range of serious issues.

The long list of risks, rated high or very high, includes further cost blowouts, safety and security concerns, inability to attract and retain skilled resources and compromised operations.

"After spending billions of taxpayer dollars, the government's signature public transport project now faces a series of major risks, including failure to deliver expected long term benefits as well as more delays," Ms Haylen said.

NSW deputy Liberal Stuart Ayres denies helping John Barilaro get US trade job in Facebook post

  NSW deputy Liberal Stuart Ayres denies helping John Barilaro get US trade job in Facebook post Stuart Ayres dismissed speculation he played a helping hand as his involvement in the recruitment process comes under scrutiny.Mr Ayres dismissed allegations he had a hand in appointing Mr Barilaro as the Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner to the Americas.

"This will increase the total cost of the metro line between Chatswood and Bankstown via the CBD to $18.5 billion, which is far higher than the original budget of $11.5 billion to $12.5 billion."

In June, state budget papers revealed the price tag for the Sydney Metro City and South West had blown out by about $6 billion, as NSW's major transport infrastructure projects face significant cost hikes.

Union slams new school trial

The NSW teacher’s union says the state government’s announcement of 200 school support staff is “not even window dressing”.

Yesterday, the NSW government announced a trial of new administration roles in public schools to help teachers with non-teaching tasks such as data entry, paperwork and coordinating excursions.

But the president of the Teachers Federation, Angelo Gavrielatos, said the 200 support staff across the state would have next-to-no impact on teachers.

“This is not even window dressing,” he said.

"We need a fundamental reset to deal with the underlying conditions that have created the teacher shortage, unsustainable workloads and uncompetitive salaries."

John Barilaro's New York trade ambassador job application full of typos, inquiry evidence shows

  John Barilaro's New York trade ambassador job application full of typos, inquiry evidence shows The typo-littered application that landed John Barilaro the plum $500,000 trade posting in New York has been revealed and it has mistakes in the first sentence.The former NSW deputy premier stood down from the $500,000 a year posting last month following a severe backlash over his controversial appointment.

The new roles will be trialled in public schools from term four.

Inquest into man fatally shot by police to begin

An inquest is due to start today into the death of a Sydney man shot by police after a domestic violence incident.

Fifty-three-year-old Jacob Carr died after being shot by police in August 2019.

Officers say they were called after he fought with his mother at his nephew's engagement party at Ingleside on Sydney's Northern Beaches.

They say after the fight, Carr went into a granny flat attached to the house and refused to come out.

Police say after they entered through an unlocked door, he pointed a gun at them.

He was shot in the leg but died on the way to hospital.

Family and friends say Carr had struggled with chronic pain and depression for years before his death.

DNA collection sites open for families of missing loved ones

Relatives of people who have been missing for a long time are being urged to provide DNA at collection centres across New South Wales from today.

The pop-up sites in Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong and Penrith are part of National Missing Persons Week and will operate until Saturday, August 6.

NSW currently has 751 outstanding cold cases, some dating back to the 1940s. There are also about 330 unidentified bodies.

It's hoped the familial samples can help find links between the two.

Why do politicians think they can get away with whatever they want?

  Why do politicians think they can get away with whatever they want? Why did the Perrottet government think they could get away with appointing John Barilaro? They'd fallen into a trap common to long-term incumbents.But that doesn’t explain exactly why Stuart Ayres, and his colleagues, didn’t see the appointment of John Barilaro — a notorious pork-barreller himself — to a $500,000 a year New York job as likely to offend voters and spark a media frenzy. Or why they thought what turns out to have been a fairly pathetic cover-up by Ayres was ever going to resist the most basic scrutiny.

The manager of the NSW Missing Persons Registry, Glenn Browne, said the initiative, which is now in its second year, had been extremely useful.

"At the moment, we don't have a direct result where we've identified an unidentified body but there have been a couple of cases where… we've discovered that we're actually heading down the wrong path," he said.

"[It] can rule out lines of inquiry for us just as easily as it can rule in certain lines of inquiry."

Mr Browne also reassured people that the mouth swabs would only be compared against missing persons databases in Australia.

New Chinese cultural museum for Sydney

The contributions made by the Chinese community nationally and in NSW will be recognised in a new museum in Sydney — the first of its kind in the state.

Under the NSW's government's $2.28 million investment, Chinatown's historic Haymarket Library will be refurbished into the Museum of Chinese in Australia (MOCA).

Minister for the Arts Ben Franklin called it a "wonderful project" that would "fill an important space in the cultural storytelling of this nation".

Minister for Multiculturalism Mark Coure said the museum was also a wonderful example of the community's multicultural success story.

"I think this will uniquely show how well our multicultural society works — highlighting our historical past and the contributions of the Chinese community," he said.

"While this museum will be about celebrating their valued contributions, it will help foster greater unity and understanding of those of Chinese heritage and how they have helped make New South Wales the great state it is today."


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Barilaro to face inquiry over NY trade job .
John Barilaro will make a much-anticipated appearance before a NSW parliamentary committee examining how he was appointed as US trade commissioner.Mr Barilaro resigned as senior trade and investment commissioner to the Americas in June, less than two weeks after his appointment to the $500,000-a-year New York posting was revealed.

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