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Chris Hartcher

Chris Hartcher
Hartcher in 2010
Minister for Resources and Energy
In office
3 April 2011 – 4 December 2013
PremierBarry O'Farrell
Preceded byPaul Lynch
Succeeded byAnthony Roberts
Special Minister of State
In office
3 April 2011 – 4 December 2013
Preceded byEric Roozendaal
Succeeded byAnthony Roberts
Minister for the Central Coast
In office
3 April 2011 – 4 December 2013
Preceded byJohn Robertson
Succeeded byMichael Gallacher
Member of the New South Wales Parliament
for Terrigal
In office
24 March 2007 – 6 March 2015
Preceded byNew district
Succeeded byAdam Crouch
Member of the New South Wales Parliament
for Gosford
In office
19 March 1988 – 24 March 2007
Preceded byBrian McGowan
Succeeded byMarie Andrews
Personal details
Born (1946-12-21) 21 December 1946 (age 77)
North Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Political partyIndependent (2013–present)
Other political
affiliations
Liberals (1988–2013)
Residence(s)Wamberal, New South Wales
ProfessionSolicitor[1]

Christopher "Chris" Peter Hartcher (born 21 December 1946) is an Australian politician. He was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly from 1988 to 2015, representing the electorates of Gosford (1988–2007) and Terrigal (2007–2015). He represented the Liberal Party for most of his career, serving as its deputy state leader from 2002 to 2003, and in the O'Farrell Ministry as Minister for Resources and Energy, Special Minister of State and Minister for the Central Coast. In 2013, he resigned to sit as an independent following his implication in an ongoing Independent Commission Against Corruption inquiry, and retired at the 2015 state election.

Early life

Hartcher was born in North Sydney and was educated at Saint Ignatius' College, Riverview.[2] He received a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Sydney. He then worked as a personal injury and family law solicitor employed by his uncle.

Political career

Hartcher was elected to represent Gosford for the Liberal Party at the 1988 NSW state election. He was appointed Government Whip in 1991 and served in that role until 1992.[3] On 3 July 1992, Hartcher was appointed to the NSW Cabinet as Minister for the Environment and left the Cabinet with the defeat of the Fahey Government in March 1995.[3]

NSW Opposition

After the 1995 election, Hartcher was appointed to a number of shadow ministerial portfolios, spending a combined eight years as Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations, five years as Shadow Attorney General, and three years as Shadow Minister for 2000 Olympic Games.

On 28 March 2002 he was elected as deputy opposition leader under John Brogden until the 2003 state election.[3] Former Premier Bob Carr was often Hartcher's political "sparring partner", a relationship Carr referred to as "good natured fun".[4] Carr nicknamed Hartcher the Swamp Fox – an irreverent reference to US War of Independence guerrilla commander, Francis Marion – to suggest Hartcher would challenge Brogden for leadership of the party.[5]

At the 2003 election Hartcher was challenged in the seat of Gosford by Labor candidate Deborah O'Neill and won by only 272 votes.[6] After narrowly retaining Gosford, Hartcher decided to step down as Deputy Liberal Leader.

In 2006, New South Wales Legislative Assembly seats were subject to an electoral redistribution. The seat of Peats was abolished and the majority of the area was redistributed into a newly created seat of Gosford. The majority of the former seat of Gosford was redistributed into the new electoral district of Terrigal. Hartcher was again challenged by O'Neill but was elected Member for Terrigal on 24 March 2007. O'Neill was later elected as the Member for Robertson at the 2010 Federal Election.

In 2010, Hartcher was endorsed as the Liberal Party's candidate for Terrigal ahead of the 2011 election. He was elected with a swing of 11.1 points, and won the seat with 74.1 per cent of the two-party vote.[7] His main opponent was Labor's Trevor Drake, who was a former Liberal Party Gosford City Councillor.[8]

O'Farrell Government

On 3 April 2011, Hartcher was appointed by Premier Barry O'Farrell to the Cabinet as Minister for Resources and Energy, Special Minister of State and Minister for the Central Coast.[9]

He resigned from Cabinet on 4 December 2013 after the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) raided his office.[10][11] In February 2014, the ICAC commenced investigating allegations of electoral funding irregularities.[12] In response to the inquiry, Hartcher, and fellow MPs Chris Spence and Darren Webber, stood aside from the parliamentary party, even though they had just renominated for their seats, to sit as independents.[13] With a final report not released before the 2015 election campaign, Hartcher, Spence and Webber chose to retire and not contest the next election.

On 30 August 2016, the ICAC released its report into the investigation into illegal developer donations. It found that Hartcher had "acted with the intention of evading laws banning political donations from property developers, cap donations and requiring the disclosure of donation" and also recommended that the Director of Public Prosecutions consider laying a charge against Hartcher of larceny.[14][15] That recommendation related to a cheque for $4,000 made out to the Liberal Party as a donation, but found by ICAC to be deposited into an account controlled by Hartcher and later withdrawn in cash by Ray Carter.[16]

Personal life

Hartcher is married with three sons.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b "Chris Hartcher". Chris Hartcher. Archived from the original on 7 January 2010. Retrieved 12 February 2010.
  2. ^ "Motor Accident Compensation Amendment (Terrorism) Bill" (PDF). Hansard. Parliament of New South Wales. 12 November 2003. Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 June 2011.
  3. ^ a b c "Mr (Chris) Christopher Peter Hartcher (1946- )". Former members of the Parliament of New South Wales. Retrieved 15 October 2019.
  4. ^ "Carr defends Lib leadership taunts". ABC News. Australia. 15 March 2011.
  5. ^ "Questions Without Notice: Malabar Police Station" (PDF). Hansard. Parliament of New South Wales. 3 April 2001. p. 13019. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 July 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2011.
  6. ^ "Terrigal – NSW 2011". The Tally Room: Elections and politics in Australia and around the world. Ben Raue. 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2011.
  7. ^ Green, Antony (5 April 2011). "Terrigal". NSW Votes 2011. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 30 April 2011.
  8. ^ Aston, Heath; Carroll, Lucy (18 June 2013). "Labor's sole nominee for seat of Dobell is former Liberal". Retrieved 6 November 2018.
  9. ^ "New faces in Barry O'Farrell's Cabinet". The Australian. AAP. 3 April 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2011.
  10. ^ "Chris Hartcher resigns from NSW cabinet over ICAC inquiry". Sydney Morning Herald. 4 December 2013.
  11. ^ "Energy Minister Chris Hartcher resigns after ICAC raid on his offices". Daily Telegraph. 4 December 2013.
  12. ^ "Public notice". NSW members of parliament – corruption allegations concerning soliciting, receiving and concealing payments – (Operation Spicer). Independent Commission Against Corruption. 2014. Archived from the original on 23 May 2014. Retrieved 22 February 2014., link no longer available
  13. ^ Gerathy, Sarah (19 February 2014). "Liberal MPs step down over ICAC allegations". ABC News. Retrieved 15 October 2019.
  14. ^ "ICAC refers Chris Hartcher, Andrew Cornwell and Joe Tripodi among others to NSW DPP for prosecution". www.9news.com.au. Retrieved 15 October 2019.
  15. ^ NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) (30 August 2016). "Investigation into NSW Liberal Party electoral funding for the 2011 state election campaign and other matters". Archived from the original on 26 March 2017. Retrieved 6 November 2018.
  16. ^ NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) (30 August 2016). "Investigation into NSW Liberal Party electoral funding for the 2011 state election campaign and other matters". Archived from the original on 26 March 2017. Retrieved 6 November 2018.

 

New South Wales Legislative Assembly Preceded byBrian McGowan Member for Gosford 1988–2007 Succeeded byMarie Andrews New district Member for Terrigal 2007–2015 Succeeded byAdam Crouch Political offices Preceded byBruce Baird Minister for the Environment 1992–1995 Succeeded byPam Allan Preceded byPaul Lynch Minister for Resources and Energy 2011–2013 Succeeded byAnthony Roberts Preceded byEric Roozendaal Special Minister of State 2011–2013 Succeeded byAnthony Roberts Preceded byJohn Robertson Minister for the Central Coast 2011–2013 Succeeded byMichael Gallacher Party political offices Preceded byBarry O'Farrell Deputy Leader of the New South Wales Liberal Party 2002–2003 Succeeded byBarry O'Farrell
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Chris Hartcher
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