The Andrews Labor Government’s announcement of senior Victorian Police officer Stephen Leane as the new Road Safety Camera Commissioner risks undermining the independence of the position.
As the outgoing Assistant Commissioner for Road Safety, Mr Leane was responsible for Victoria Police’s road safety camera system, yet as Road Safety Camera Commissioner he will now be expected to provide independent oversight of the system he used to run.
Whilst Mr Leane’s character and credentials as a 40 year member of Victoria Police are not in question, his immediate background as the senior officer running the road safety camera system is a major conflict with his new role ‘independently’ overseeing that system and makes his appointment inappropriate.
The Office of the Road Safety Camera Commissioner was established in 2012 by the previous Liberal Nationals Government to increase transparency and accountability of Victoria’s road safety camera system, and to provide oversight of the system independently of Victoria Police.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Road Safety and the TAC, Gordon Rich-Phillips:
“The Andrews Labor Government has undermined the independent oversight of the Road Safety Camera Commissioner.”
“The public’s confidence that their complaints will be handled fairly will be seriously damaged if the Commissioner reviewing the complaints is the same person who previously was running the system they’re complaining about.”