BAYSWATER councillor Terry Kenyon has been declared bankrupt by the Federal Court over a $324,767 debt to his former lawyers Lavan Legal.
On Monday registrar Russell Trott ordered that Cr Kenyon’s estate be sequestered by the public trustee, who’ll sell off assets to pay Lavan’s bill, plus another $7703 for their latest court costs. Cr Kenyon has 21 days to appeal the ruling.
The order could spell the end of his 23-year council career, at least while he sits out the three years and one day of his bankruptcy, as WA’s local government act disqualifies insolvents from sitting on councils.
Bayswater’s acting CEO Carissa Bywater told the Voice via email; “I will be writing to Cr Kenyon to provide notice that I have reason to believe that he is disqualified from holding the position of councillor at the City of Bayswater.
“However if Cr Kenyon believes that he is not disqualified, he may seek to satisfy the (acting) CEO that he is not disqualified, or he may apply to the State Administrative Tribunal seeking a declaration as to whether or not he is disqualified”.
Once he receives the notice he has 14 days to advise the CEO if he believes he’s not disqualified, then 28 days to lodge an appeal with the SAT (we haven’t heard back from Cr Kenyon about whether he plans to appeal).
Cr Kenyon’s debt arose from a defamation action against former councillors Mike Anderton and Mike Sabatino. The case was settled with the pair paying him $84,000, but they took it back after suing him for breaching a confidentiality clause.
Bayswater council pays councillors their $34,000 annual fee in advance, and Ms Bywater says councillors sign a declaration acknowledging they’ll have to pay back the remainder if they leave office early.
by DAVID BELL