EXPELLED: Former Tin Can Bay coastguard commander Phil Feldman has been expelled for talking to the state government.
EXPELLED: Former Tin Can Bay coastguard commander Phil Feldman has been expelled for talking to the state government. Renee Albrecht

Management moves to crush Tin Can Bay coastguard rebellion

TIN Can Bay Coast Guard's Sunshine Coast administrative body has confirmed the expulsion of its "whistleblower” commander, Phil Feldman, over his questioning of administrative and accounting issues.

Both sides of the dispute yesterday declared their determination to keep the life saving service in the water.

Mr Feldman said his expulsion would not stop him calling for an investigation into his concerns.

He claims he has been punished for communicating with relevant government agencies, a claim apparently confirmed by correspondence from the governing body, Australian Volunteer Coast Guard.

Mr Feldman said the organisation's Sunshine Coast Squadron Commodore, John Milland, had told him of his suspension as flotilla commander in a letter on November 4, 2018.

This was superseded by further notification that he had been expelled altogether, for allegedly not complying with safety regulations, and communicating "on several occasions with government departmental officers.”

Mr Feldman said a recent general meeting of volunteers had passed a vote of no confidence in the AVCG administration.

A "squadron representative” had reminded members that their assets, including boats, money and other property, were owned by the governing body, reminding members of "what happened in Port Douglas.”

Mr Feldman said what happened included a claim on assets which paralysed the rescue service to a point that required state government intervention.

Commodore Milland declined to respond to questions from The Gympie Times yesterday on the no confidence motion, the move to switch to another administrative body and the claimed threat to assert control of "boats, money and equipment”.

But he said Mr Feldman had been replaced and the service would continue uninterrupted.

Gympie Times


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