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An report by the auditor-general has found WA's former transport minister ignored the advice of his own department about whether to release documents relating to the scrapped MAX Light Rail project.
Auditor-general Colin Murphy found the decision not to provide the documents was not reasonable or appropriate, as the findings sparked renewed criticism from Labor that the Government had been excessively secretive.
The report related to a request from State Parliament's estimates committee to provide a pair of documents about a company contracted to review the MAX project.
According to Mr Murphy's report, the Department of Transport recommended the documents be provided and drafted a response for then minister Dean Nalder.
But Mr Nalder did not follow the advice, instead telling the committee the information could not be provided for cabinet confidentiality reasons.
Mr Murphy's report found all of the information was already publicly available anyway.
"In my opinion the decision is not reasonable and therefore not appropriate," Mr Murphy said.
Labor's transport spokeswoman Rita Saffioti urged the new minister to provide the documents, saying the previous decision raised serious questions about the Government's transparency.
"It's quite a damning report about the level of secrecy in the Barnett Government," Ms Saffioti said.
"This isn't the first time ministers have been caught out about not providing information."
A Government spokesman said Transport Minister Bill Marmion was aware of the decision, saying it was a matter for Mr Nalder.
But the spokesman rejected suggestions it raised questions around Government transparency, saying the documents are already in the public arena.
"Labor's suggestion that the former Minister's decision and the report is 'another sign of excessive secrecy within the government' is ridiculous, simply untrue and a blatant headline grab," he said.
This article first appeared on www.abc.net.au
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