NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian says she is unconcerned by recent reports which claim one of her cabinet colleagues intervened in sports grants in the lead up to the 2019 state election.
Labor leader Jodi McKay referred the scheme to the auditor-general earlier in the year after she argued 90 per cent of grants were given to Liberal or target seats in the lead up to last year's state election.
But the premier says she's confident Stuart Ayres - who was sports minister at the time - fairly awarded the grants.
"There's nothing that I've read that concerns me about this matter," Ms Berejiklian told reporters in Sydney on Thursday.
"I am absolutely confident the minister has done the right thing."
Mr Ayres, who now holds the jobs and tourism portfolio, has previously denied the grants were targeted, saying he approved recommendations given to him by the Office of Sport and that they had been reviewed by an assessment panel and probity adviser.
However, the minister was reportedly directly involved in deciding which applications were shortlisted for funding in the 2018 grants round, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
He reportedly chose five of the 15 successful projects at the final approvals stage and rejected two grants recommended by the Office of Sports' assessment panel.
Ms Berejiklian on Thursday said it would be unusual if a minister had nothing to do with a grants program they were administering.
"It's just not feasible that there would be a grants program in your area of responsibility, which you didn't have at least some input into," she said.
"The issue is, was all the criteria satisfied for all the applications that came forward ... so long as everything's done within the guidelines."
The premier said this was unlike the sports rorts scandal that plagued the federal government and which led to the resignation of deputy Nationals leader Senator Bridget McKenzie, saying there was no conflict of interest by Mr Ayres.
NSW Labor had previously said that 12 of the 15 grants administered under last year's $33.4 million round of funding for the Greater Sydney Sport Facility Fund were for projects in Liberal-held seats.
Councils in western Sydney including Canterbury Bankstown, Blacktown, Liverpool and Campbelltown had their funding applications rejected.
Mr Ayres has been contacted for comment.
Australian Associated Press
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