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Vic transport corruption claims aired

Misconduct allegations involving Victorian train contracts will be aired in public hearings, as the state’s corruption watchdog cries out for more funding.

The Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission will examine allegations that senior public officials improperly influenced the awarding of major contracts with V/Line and Metro Trains.

It comes as IBAC Commissioner Robert Redlich QC takes a swipe at the level of funding the watchdog receives.

“It is deeply concerning that IBAC’s budget has remained largely static since we were founded,” he said on Thursday.

“This means that today IBAC cannot investigate a significant number of complaints of serious misconduct which may warrant our investigation.”

Without extra funding from 2021, the commissioner warned IBAC’s ability to prevent and expose corruption would be further curtailed.

While IBAC’s workload had grown significantly since its establishment, Mr Redlich said its budget hadn’t been indexed and so funding was not increasing in line with costs.

Hearings into alleged corruption in public transport contracts will begin on October 26 and be live-streamed.

In August, V/Line boss James Pinder was stood down when it emerged he was under investigation by IBAC.

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