State appoints Catholic vicar general to senior Executive Committee
In the first such move in the country, South Australian Premier Mike Rann has Adelaide Archdiocese Vicar General Monsignor David Cappo to his Cabinet's senior Executive Committee.
Monsignor Cappo's appointment is one of two. The other appointee is businessman Robert Champion de Crespigny.
ABC Radio's World Today program describes the move a s "bold experiment in government in an effort to improve investment and the quality of service in his State".
It says the state's opposition was raising concerns on Friday that the two new appointments won't be accountable to the public.
But a senior lecturer in politics at South Australia's Flinders University, Dr Hayden Manning believes the appointments could be a "positive reform" to government.
"I think on balance South Australia needs to experiment, it needs to try different things, it's a State - as all Australians know - that's suffered in the last decade and a half, going back to the collapse of State Bank," she said. "Development now in the various economic indices in South Australia is improving, and innovation in government is one of the forces that drives that, arguably."
Dr Manning suggested that the criticism the the Catholic Church might wield an undue influence on the State Government is "fairly minor".
"It's not as though the Catholic Church or any other church is in any way in a position to influence the South Australian Government," he said. "Again, time will tell. I think it's exaggerated to bring up that question of Church and state in any serious way at the moment."
SA Premier makes bold move to improve the State's performance (ABC Radio The World Today 22/4/05)
LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Government of South Australia
Archdiocese of Adelaide
Church praise for South Australia's "breakthrough" strategic plan (CathNews 5/4/04)
Australasia: Cabinet committee appointments questioned (KeralaNext.com 19/4/05)
Rann targets outside talent (Australian Associated Press 19/4/05)
Start on city homes for needy (The Advertiser 18/4/05)
26 Apr 2005