(1) The Departmental Chief Executive, on behalf of the State, may recover the reasonable expenses incurred by the State in holding a public inquiry if the inquiry relates to a recurring problem with the administration of a council.
(2) A recurring problem with the administration of a council means any facts or circumstances with respect to the council, its work or its activities that have been the subject of previous Ministerial intervention, and that have continued to exist or have recurred, despite that Ministerial intervention.
(3) In this section,
"Ministerial intervention" means--(a) the issue of a performance improvement order, or(b) the temporary suspension of a council under Part 7.
(4) The Departmental Chief Executive may make a determination of the amount of the expenses referred to in subsection (1) and serve a notice on the council requiring the amount so determined be paid in recovery of the expenses.
(5) An amount equal to the expenses as so determined, unless the Departmental Chief Executive otherwise decides, is payable to the Departmental Chief Executive as a debt by the council concerned.
(6) The council may apply to the Civil and Administrative Tribunal for an administrative review under the Administrative Decisions Review Act 1997 of whether any part of the expenses so determined are not reasonable expenses.
(7) The Departmental Chief Executive must give effect to any decision of the Tribunal on an administrative review of the determination of the amount of the expenses.
(8) In this section, expenses incurred in holding a public inquiry include--(a) remuneration paid to the commissioner or commissioners who hold the public inquiry, and(b) remuneration paid to staff assisting with the inquiry, and(c) expenses associated with the attendance of witnesses or other persons at the inquiry.
(9) The Departmental Chief Executive may certify that a public inquiry relates to a recurring problem with the administration of a council and that certificate is sufficient evidence, unless the contrary is proved, that the public inquiry relates to a recurring problem with the administration of the council.