Sir Tim to keep mayoral car despite suspension

    Sir Tim Shadbolt. Photo: Stephen Jaquiery

    SIR Tim Shadbolt will be able to keep his mayoral car, despite having a suspended licence, the Invercargill City Council chief executive has confirmed.

    The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) confirmed earlier this week Sir Tim’s licence had been suspended.

    Sir Tim has not replied to phone calls this week and was yet to reveal why his licence had been suspended.

    An NZTA spokesman said a licence could be suspended either because a driver had accumulated too many demerit points or on medical grounds.

    There were no records of driving matters relating to Sir Tim at the Invercargill District Court.

    Council chief executive Clare Hadley directed questions relating to Sir Tim’s driving status to him, but clarified the situation regarding his mayoral car.

    She said under the Local Government Members Determination 2019, a local authority could provide the mayor with a motor vehicle or with vehicle mileage.

    She said even if he had a suspended driver’s licence, council’s obligations would not change.

    “Currently, he has full private use of the vehicle – unrestricted personal use – so it does not matter who is driving the vehicle.

    “The mayor still needs to be able to attend engagements, so if he makes arrangements for an authorised driver, that is not a matter for council.”

    There were no guidelines for whether a council should or should not provide the mayor with a vehicle, but the car was part of his salary package, she said.

    “A vehicle that is provided to Sir Tim for full private use must result in a deduction in his salary to allow for this. The remuneration authority sets the deduction based on the following formula vehicle price x 41% x 20% = amount to be deducted from remuneration payable to Sir Tim.”

    Sir Tim chaired a full council meeting on Tuesday but there was no mention of his licence suspension.