Jim Lindsay and Garry Duffy.
Jim Lindsay and Garry Duffy. Contributed

Ipswich ratepayers to pay suspended CEO's defamation action

RATEPAYERS will foot the bill for the Ipswich City Council's suspended chief executive officer to pursue a defamation case against a former mayoral candidate.

Chief executive officer Jim Lindsay is pursuing candidate Gary Duffy for defamation.

Mr Lindsay claims Mr Duffy defamed him on 23 separate occasions via social media between July 2015 and May 2016.

Former mayor Paul Pisasale also launched a defamation suit against Mr Duffy.

Last year Mr Lindsay and Mr Pisasale were each charged by the Crime and Corruption Commission with official corruption.

Both deny the claims and intend to fight them in court.

Last week a spokesman for the Ipswich City Council confirmed ratepayers were paying for Mr Lindsay's legal representation through its insurance policy.

Yesterday, the spokesman confirmed the same arrangement was in place for Mr Lindsay's defamation suit.

"Legal costs for Jim Lindsay are covered under a policy through council's insurance provider," the spokesman said.

"Council is not directly involved in these transactions so it does not have visibility of the progressive accumulation of costs.

"Lawyers invoice the insurer direct and council is not aware of the amounts invoiced or paid."

The spokesman said the council and its insurer were not funding the legal costs for Mr Pisasale's personal matters before the courts.

Councillors are expected to receive a report about the employment of Mr Lindsay and suspended parks, works and operations manager Craig Maudsley on Friday ahead of committee meetings next week.

Both officers remain on full remuneration with the Ipswich City Council.