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Sacked Transport for NSW boss to receive $800,000 payout

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Transport for NSW’s top bureaucrat Rodd Staples will leave the role later this month with more than $800,000 in severance from the NSW taxpayer.

The Sydney Morning Herald today reports that Staples is entitled to a $436,225 termination payout before tax, as well as $170,604 in recreation leave and $230,754 in long service leave, equating to just over $837,000. His annual salary was $599,000.

The secretary of Transport for NSW exits the building on February 19, three months after he was told his contract would be terminated with “no stated reason”.

Correspondence between Staples and Tim Reardon, the secretary of the Department of Premier and Cabinet, was provided to NSW Parliament under an order from the upper house.

The documents reveal Reardon told Staples that he would be sacked under section 41 of the Government Sector Employment Act, which allows for executives to be terminated “at any time, for any or no stated reason and without notice”.

The SMH also reports that in a letter to Reardon, Staples said there had been no issues with his performance.

“I accept this termination in the context that my documented performance, including my recent performance review with the Premier, has been satisfactory with no performance issues raised,” the letter, dated November 17, said.

“I accept this termination on the basis that there will be no negative formal or informal statements made about my performance and its relationship to my termination before or after the date of my termination.”

NSW Labor finance spokesman Daniel Mookhey said Staples’ termination was an “internal power-play at taxpayers’ expense”.

“To fire a deeply respected public servant like Rodd Staples for no reason is an arrogant act that risks the delivery of every transport project meant to create jobs,” he said.

“The Premier needs to take responsibility and explain to taxpayers why they’ve paid close to $1 million to indulge in this internecine power trip.”

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