I was saddened, as were many others, when Gladys Berejiklian resigned in the face of an ICAC inquiry investigating whether she "had breached the public trust".
At this critical time we needed her to finish the job of leading NSW out of the COVID crisis. As I explain below, the ICAC has become a destructive body. In this case it has destroyed a premier who worked harder than any Australian leader to keep her state open as much as possible, not only for jobs and freedom, but for Australians returning from overseas.
NSW's hotel quarantine worked. The government Berejiklian led now has the best hospitals in Australia.
Critics should note the posturing in Queensland and WA about hospitals "coping with COVID".
It is unfortunate that the ICAC highlighted two Wagga projects - the headquarters of the Australian Clay Target Association in Copland Street, and the unfinished Riverina Conservatorium of Music's new headquarters in Johnston Street.
For years under successive Labor governments, Wagga was overlooked for grants and major projects like hospitals.
Daryl Maguire, as our local member, worked hard once a Liberal government was in power, doing what we would expect an active local member to do.
In ensuring that Wagga gained every available dollar, Maguire was very successful - but the Public Accountability Committee chaired by Greens MLC David Shoebridge wants to query "value for money".
We elect our local member - we don't elect bureaucrats.
From his $2.2 million Woollahra home, Shoebridge probably wonders why distant Wagga deserves anything at all.
Shoebridge might prefer the recommendations of inner city public servants, but the government we elect makes the final decision.
The Wagga projects mentioned by the ICAC are not under investigation, as last Thursday's DA reported. However, Gladys is being questioned because she and Daryl Maguire were in a relationship when the grants were approved.
Would any reasonable person not recognise the long term economic benefit to Wagga of having the Clay Target Association's national headquarters here?
Accommodation and hospitality workers will see huge benefits when normal times return.
Would any reasonable person not realise that the Conservatorium needed to be relocated because of the South Campus development?
Aren't new studios, which are equipped for long distance music education of Riverina students, a wise allocation of funds?
Riverina residents and schools need the tuition and performance benefits the new Conservatorium facilities will bring.
Besides that, if Wagga is to grow to a city of 100,000 the Conservatorium is an investment in NSW's future.
Or is money only "value" if spent in the Western Suburbs?
South Australia's parliament has wisely voted, unanimously, to limit the powers of their ICAC. It was seen to have become a star chamber.
Public officers who were investigated on the basis of flawed or false claims will be compensated.
Last year the Andrews Labor government in Victoria cut the budget for IBAC, the equivalent of NSW's ICAC.
Perhaps by pure coincidence, last week Daniel Andrews appeared before IBAC
The ICAC has become a body which thrives on publicity, shaming public figures in its process.
Former Liberal premier Nick Greiner resigned but took his case to court to prove his innocence.
Former premier Barry O'Farrell under public questioning admitted that he had not declared a gifted bottle of expensive wine. He resigned.
Former Police Minister Mike Gallacher resigned in 2014. The ICAC trumpeted a story about developer's payments. "I don't even know what the allegation is - all I've heard this morning is that I have had a corrupt, long-standing relationship," he said. He wasn't cleared by the ICAC until 2019 - but his political career was ruined.
The High Court ruled that the ICAC had exceeded its authority in its persecution of Crown Prosecutor Margaret Cunneen.
Cases like Eddie Obeid should have gone straight to the police.
The ICAC's process has been described as inquisition, coercion and public shaming, giving the impression of a show trial. The person being investigated is treated as guilty merely because they appear before ICAC.
The Australian Clay Target Association conference centre ("The Range") is built, an asset needed in Wagga.
Our Independent Member of Parliament, Joe McGirr, supports the Conservatorium project.
Stage 1 is well underway and should be ready some time next year.