On Monday IBAC commissioner Robert Redlich, QC, quizzed Mr Staindl about his work for Mr Woodman and the shortage of transparency round lobbying in Victoria. Mr Staindl confirmed that he and his then lobbying accomplice, former Liberal MP Geoff Leigh, earned $500,000 every for serving to to get a Cranbourne egg farm rezoned to residential.
The 100-hectare Cranbourne South property, often called Brompton Lodge, was introduced into Melbourne’s boundaries by the Baillieu Liberal authorities in 2012.
The land was purchased in 1974 by egg farmers for $73,500, and after the rezoning they offered it for $55 million to Mr Woodman’s son Heath and his enterprise accomplice, who anticipated to make gross sales totalling greater than $500 million.
Mr Staindl had lobbied for Mr Woodman on and off for about 15 years however severed ties final yr, expressing shock about over revelations of alleged corruption at Casey council. Till late final yr, Mr Staindl was on a $3000 month-to-month retainer.
His major position was to behave as a conduit to the Andrews Labor authorities.
Mr Staindl has been recognized by IBAC as an essential member of Mr Woodman’s staff, who helped win planning approvals together with by showering native and state politicians and candidates with political donations.
Central to IBAC’s Casey investigation is Mr Woodman’s makes an attempt from 2014 to safe one other rezoning, this time at Cranbourne West, value as much as $150 million to his purchasers, property large Leighton, and himself.
IBAC has heard how beneath an preliminary association, Mr Staindl was to obtain a $250,000 success payment for his work in lobbying for the Cranbourne West rezoning.
Mr Staindl instructed the listening to proposed success payment was withdrawn after the state authorities banned funds of this sort in 2014. The rezoning was later derailed when The Sunday Age raised considerations about it in late 2018.
However Mr Staindl appeared rattled when requested on Monday if he was conscious of a secretly taped dialogue between himself and Mr Woodman about that $250,000 success payment being held in belief by regulation agency Maddocks.
“I keep in mind a dialogue the place I requested Mr Woodman if the success payment was nonetheless there, and he stated, ‘Sure’. I keep in mind my abdomen sank,” Mr Staindl stated. “I met him a month or so after that and stated, ‘I can’t settle for a hit payment.’”
Mr Staindl is predicted to be the primary witness for the rest of the week.
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Royce Millar is an investigative journalist at The Age with a particular curiosity in public coverage and authorities decision-making.
Clay Lucas is a senior reporter for The Age. Clay has labored at The Age since 2005, protecting city affairs, transport, state politics, native authorities and office relations for The Age and Sunday Age.