Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) chair, James Shipton, has stepped aside pending the outcome of a review into his remuneration arrangements.
Between 2018 and 2020, ASIC made regular accommodation payments of A$750 per week on behalf of Mr Crennan following his relocation from Melbourne to Sydney, resulting in him exceeding his total remuneration package. Crennan has indicated that he will repay the amount as a debt due to the Commonwealth.
Shipton's payment stemmed from tax advice provided by auditor KPMG around his relocation from the United States. ASIC approved three A$25,000 procurements - along with smaller sums for initial advice - but was invoiced some A$118,557 due to the "complexity of the tax affairs being managed".
"A note in the report identifies payments of certain relocation expenses incurred on my behalf (on my appointment and return to Australia from the US) and deputy chair [Daniel] Crennan (following an agreement that he move from Melbourne to Sydney)," Shipton said in a report tabled to Parliament.
"Following its audit of ASIC's financial statements, the ANAO stated a belief that the total remuneration paid to both office holders may exceed the limits set within the relevant Remuneration Tribunal Determinations.
Shipton said he would voluntarily reimburse ASIC for taxation related expenses ASIC paid following his 2018 relocation from the United States.
"At all times during consideration of this matter I have been mindful of the need to avoid any conflict of interest," Shipton said.