A message from the ASU Taxation Officers’ Branch
We are sad to advise that our past President, past Treasurer and friend, Keith Meynell died on Monday morning, 17 October 2022 at Austin Palliative care, surrounded by his daughters, Rebecca and Lizzie. Keith was a good friend, a great unionist and a great tax officer, with an intellectual curiosity that extended from science, through economics and society to religious spirituality. We know many longstanding ASU members will remember Keith and miss him too.
Official positions with the ASU
Keith joined the ASU way back in 1996. Keith was an APS 6 with an expertise in and fascination with all types of taxes and tax administration. Keith quickly became actively involved with the ASU. So much so that he stood for our Branch President position in the 1999 contested elections and was duly elected. Keith was also elected as a delegate to the ASU National Conference. Keith took up the Treasurer role at the 2003 elections and remained in this key position until the May 2011 elections, when he stood aside. Keith gave up the National Conference delegate position at the elections in 2007. Keith retired from the ATO in 2014.
Keith’s active role in the ASU
Keith worked with me on many rounds of bargaining new collective agreements with the ATO. This included the 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009 and 2011 Agreements. Keith was the key to the ASU moving from our campaign for the first NO vote in 2011 to working out a way forward with then Deputy Commissioner David Diment, so the ASU was able to negotiate the 2011 Agreement. Keith returned from retirement to assist the ASU with the first round of bargaining in 2014 in what led to the first of three NO votes, before the ASU was able to find a way to negotiate the 2017 ATO Enterprise Agreement. Keith was made a life member of the ASU after his retirement.
Keith the man
I got to know Keith well while we worked together on enterprise bargaining. But what sticks in my mind more were our fortnightly lunchtime meetings at Box Hill, when Keith would authorise our Union’s payments. We would go to one of the many cafes and restaurants, and settle down to go over the paperwork, while we waited for our lunch. We then talked about life and the ATO. It was during these times that Keith’s wry sense of humour shone through, his knowledge of arcane facts and his interest in the Bible. Keith was adept at enterprise bargaining, particularly because of his ability to analyse the ATO’s finances and interpret the Commissioner’s position at the bargaining table on pay and conditions. Keith’s optimism always shone through, and this was a comfort. I will always miss him.
ASU Tax Branch Secretary