Main Roads regional manager Terry Hill with Federal Government Treasurer Wayne Swan and Rockhampton State MP Bill Byrne inspect the Yeppen Crossing construction site in Rockhampton.
Main Roads regional manager Terry Hill with Federal Government Treasurer Wayne Swan and Rockhampton State MP Bill Byrne inspect the Yeppen Crossing construction site in Rockhampton. Chris Ison

Questions asked over public servant's sacking in parliament

THE issue of sacked Rockhampton public servant Terry Hill was raised again in Queensland Parliament yesterday as Rockhampton MP Bill Byrne called on Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson to explain the reasons for the decision.

"I asked why, given that Terry Hill had been ranked equal first by an independent selection panel, was his name left off an appointment list for a position as regional director (of CQ main roads)," Mr Byrne said.

"The Leader of the Opposition asked Mr Emerson why he attempted to 'uninvite' former Member for Rockhampton Robert Schwarten, former Member for Keppel Paul Hoolihan and former Rockhampton Regional Council Mayor Brad Carter from the ceremony to open the Gracemere overpass (in May).

Overpass ribbon cutting: Cr Margaret Strelow calls Brad Carter and Robert Schwarten to help with cutting the ribbon at the official opening of the Gracemere overpass.
Overpass ribbon cutting: Cr Margaret Strelow calls Brad Carter and Robert Schwarten to help with cutting the ribbon at the official opening of the Gracemere overpass.

"The link between those questions is an allegation that someone in high authority within the Newman Government blamed Mr Hill for the attendance of Robert Schwarten and Brad Carter at the opening ceremony and punished him by wrecking his public sector career."

Mr Byrne said not only did Mr Emerson fail to answer the questions, but also resorted to a personal attack on himself.

A spokesman from Mr Emerson's office said Mr Byrne's question had been addressed, before adding that the Member for Rockhampton had some questions to answer himself over some confusion as to why he did not attend the ceremony.

The spokesman said Mr Emerson's office had written to the speaker requesting her to refer Mr Byrne to the Ethics committee over this issue.

Yesterday, Mr Emerson said it was a matter handled by the director-general of the department.