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Melbourne moves Litmus test for CSIRO

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PRESS RELEASEPeter McGauran MPShadow M inister for Science and Technology Federal Member for GippslandMELBOURNE MOVE LITMUS TEST FOR CSIROThe attack on CSIRO's decision to move its headquarters to Melbourne has jeopardised the Organisation's independence. ·The campaign, spearheaded by local Canberra MPs Ros Kelly and John Langmore and actively backed by the Treasurer's Secretary Senator Bob McMullin, has sought to pull CSIRO into a political turf war.But Opposition spokesman on Science and Technology, Peter McGauran, today called on the Government to guarantee the Board's independence from political Interference,Mr McGauran said the political fallout from the decision would prove a test case for the Integrity of the CSIRO's Board,"The Government must once and for all reaffirm the responsibilities and Independence of the CSIRO's executive arm."There's no half-way-house on the issue."Mr McGauran said the war waged on the CSIRO's decision threatened to rob the Board of its authority and had damaged its credibility."Personal attacks on the motives of Board members and pandering to public sector unions are sabotaging Its relationships with the wider organisation."The Board must be left alone to run CSIRO's Internal affairs as It seems fit."Mr McGauran said unless the Government stood by the Board, every future CSIRO decision would be subject to political lobbying and Internal dissension."The CSIRO is responsible for distributing v?«» research resources around the country."It can ill-afford to be dragged into political stunts at every turn."Mr McGauran said it had been the second time Labor MPs had sought to overturn arms length policy decisions affecting the national research effort."Aboriginal Affairs Minister Robert Tickner attempted last week to prejudice an open Inquiry into future of Australia's nuclear reactor program."The trend to Interfere in the internal affairs of independent research agencies to bolster the political stakes of individual politicians needs to be halted in its tracks," he said,For further information, contact Peter McGauran: (03) 347 0164 or (051) 44 6744 Tuesday. August 26, 1892 COMMONWEALTHPARLIAMEMTARY L!BRARY COMMONWEALTH ‘PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARY—-----------------------------------------— ------------------------------------------------------------------------- MiCAH