Brownlee signals confidence in EQC boss

Good news expected for Ian Simpson

HAMISH RUTHERFORD
Last updated 05:00 05/12/2013
Gerry Brownlee
Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee
eqc
EQC Chief Executive Ian Simpson.

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Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee has expressed confidence in Ian Simpson and signalled a report into systems of the Earthquake Commission will not contain bad news for the organisation's chief executive.

In November Brownlee ordered a report into the systems of EQC after questions were raised about whether some homeowners in dispute over repairs were excluded from its satisfaction surveys.

At the time Brownlee refused to say whether he had confidence in Simpson, amid concerns that he may have been misled about the survey.

''It's one of those things that I think goes to the heart of confidence and I'm very, very annoyed about it,'' Brownlee said last month.

State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie later confirmed that Souella Cumming, a KPMG partner would conduct the inquiry, which would ask whether information EQC provided to Brownlee was "fit for purpose", as well as its process for explaining its survey results to the auditor-general.

Today Brownlee confirmed he had received a verbal briefing from Cumming and he expected the full report to be provided to him next week.

While Brownlee would not discuss the content of the briefing, asked whether it was bad news for Simpson, he said "I don't believe so".

Asked if he had confidence in Simpson, Brownlee said "yep".

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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