Snouts in the trough

Issue 

Snouts in the trough

By Peter Boyle

MELBOURNE — Under Jeff Kennett's new order, austerity is the watchword in the public sector. To underline the point that all are to be hit equally, the premier says that he will do nothing to help his sister, Judith Kennett, who is one of 2000 teachers declared in excess.

But some public servants are more equal than others. Senior public servant Geoff Spring, brought from the Northern Territory as a "cost-cutter" to head the Victorian Directorate of Schools on a princely salary of $250,000 a year, also receives $450 a week in rent assistance, a $2500 disturbance allowance, home telephone bills on the state's tab and four return air fares to Darwin, according to documents obtained by the Age — after a struggle — under the Freedom of Information laws.