Sunday, January 08, 2017

The snouts never leave the trough

We were at the beach today. There was nice looking apartment open for inspection. We took a look and it was classy place with great views, and a bargain at $750,000. Off the cuff, we bought it.

Believe me? No, I wouldn't either. The Minister must go and be prosecuted for committing the crime of cheating every Australian, along with the crime of sheer stupidity, surely the best reason why she should not be a minister. From The Age.



Embattled Health Minister Sussan Ley has admitted she made an "error of judgment" by charging taxpayers for a trip to the Gold Coast in which she bought a $795,000 apartment and will repay the cost of four taxpayer-funded trips.
Ms Ley's decision followed a conversation with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in which he said she had not met the standards he expects of ministers. 

Ms Ley had come under intense pressure to provide a full explanation of the May2015 trip or resign from the ministry since it was revealed on Friday. Government records show Ms Ley has frequently visited the Gold Coast on taxpayer-funded trips over recent years. 
Ms Ley originally said the apartment purchase, made after a health announcement in Brisbane, was "not planned nor anticipated" and that she had ministerial duties to fulfil on the Gold Coast. That claim was questioned after subsequent revelations that her partner owns a business near the unit and that it was purchased from a Liberal donor.
In a statement released on Sunday afternoon Ms Ley said the apartment auction was not the reason for her trip to the Gold Coast but she understood the purchase had "changed the context of the travel undertaken".
"The distinction between public and private business should be as clear as possible when dealing with taxpayers' money," she said.
"I have spoken to the Prime Minister and he agrees that this claim does not meet the high standards he expects of ministers.
"I apologise for the error of judgment."
The apology failed to satisfy Labor, with the party's health spokeswoman Catherine King calling on Mr Turnbull to sack Ms Ley immediately following her admission that she had breached the standard expected of ministers. 
Ms Ley said she would ask the Department of Finance on Monday to invoice her for all the costs of car and travel allowance claimed for the May 2015 trip and to apply any penalties for erroneous claims. She has also asked the department to review all her taxpayer-funded travel to the Gold Coast. 
Ms Ley and her partner charged taxpayers $3949 for flights during the two-day trip.
Ms Ley said an examination of her travel records had revealed two other claims for accommodation in the Gold Coast where she should have in fact stayed in Brisbane. She will repay the cost of these claims as well as a flight from Coolangatta to Canberra in June 2015. 
Ms Ley billed taxpayers for accommodation on the Gold Coast for four nights in July 2014 while travelling on "official business". She subsequently claimed travel allowance for two nights' accommodation on the Gold Coast in September 2014.
In August 2015 she made two trips to the Gold Coast for "official business", charging taxpayers for five nights accommodation in total. 
Ms Ley said her travel to the Gold Coast was "within the rules" but that she had decided to repay the travel claims because she holds herself to high standards.
She said she had travelled to Brisbane on 9 May 2015 to make an announcement about the availability of new medicines at a specialist breast cancer clinic before going to the Gold Coast to meet with patients. While there she purchased the apartment. 
She said she stayed in the Gold Coast that night because she was due in Canberra the following day.

22 comments:

  1. The Conservatives have done such hideous things to the working families of Australia, immoral, illegal and vicious. We should be worrying about people on Unemployment Benefits being stung with debts of thousands of dollars! Or elderly pensioners being impoverished by the Federal Government. Or children asylum seekers being locked behind barb wire in Pacific Island camps.

    Ms Ley really should provide a full explanation of the May 2015 trip and pay every penny back. But not face a firing squad.

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    1. Hels, I hope you are not talking about the latest changes to the pensions of the elderly, where the relatively wealthy are receiving pensions when they clearly have adequate money. I agree, children should not be in camps and I think most of them are no longer.

      Ley should face a metaphorical firing squad, as did Bishop and the state government minister. Politicians need to be seen cleaner than clean, and behave beyond reproach with financial matters. I fume over what Obeid got away with for so long in NSW. While I agree with Labor Party principles, I don't do so with rose coloured glasses.

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    2. I agree with the pension changes. Those who own their homes and have large amounts in super as well as assets worth more than half a million, those who regularly go off on more than one holiday a year etc; and can clearly support themselves, they shouldn't be receiving full pensions.

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  2. And I just wanted to congratulate for the new apartment, lol ! I see that in all countries it's the same story with the politicians. Probably if they were different they would be something else !

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    1. Gattina, I found the photo of the pigs on the net and its title is something like snoutsEU.

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  3. "error of judgement" when MPs do it, 'fraud' when the rest of us might

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  4. I'd heard about this and when I decided to watch the news tonight, there she was. I'm pleased she will be paying back the money, plus any penalties, but I didn't know it was from so long ago. I'd thought it was a recent happening.

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    1. River, I too thought it was recent. I wonder if she has been wondering if it would ever get picked up.

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  5. The job of a poly is very stressful we should tow them all to a deserted island when they rort the system and leave them there for 6months or so until they have learnt to live more simply.
    Merle.........

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    1. A great idea Merle. Taxpayers won't mind paying for that.

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  6. They are all the same. We had the expenses scandal over here not so long ago. I suppose resigning is far too moral and out of the question.

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    1. Marie, their thought processes puzzle me. Why do they think they won't get caught? Are the odds so much in their favour of not being caught?

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  7. So many lousy entitled politicians and rich people.

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    1. Strayer, our politicians and I would guess yours too, are well enough paid without finding it necessary to cheat the system, whether legally she did or did not in the case. It is about perception, or the pub test, and she failed 100%.

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  8. Well I think she held herself up to the standards of our ruling Party, no intelligence, plenty of arrogance and batshit crazy.

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    1. Jah Teh, that it shows a lack of intelligence is the most disappointing aspect. If a pollie is going take advantage of the system, I want them to be smart about it so I never know.

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  9. She's disgusting. I hope she gets hauled over the coals

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    1. Fen, suspended from her portfolio is a good start.

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  10. Anonymous6:29 pm

    Hi

    I'm still wondering why she went to the Gold Coast so OFTEN even when apparently on Government business. Her electorate is in southern NSW isn't it? And she wasn't popping out to Western Sydney or Arnhem Land with the same frequency.

    I also wonder why ALL MPs aren't required to publicly list on the Parliamentary Website their weekly work timesheets within three days after the end of each week. They say they work 60+ hours per week so it would be amusing to see what they classify as work. There is no reason I can see not to do so - any terrorist threat has passed and they must KEEP work diaries otherwise they wouldn't know which trough to visit next.

    Cheers

    Marie

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    1. Hi Marie. If you were to graph her travels, it would show very clearly how often she went to the GC. I would not like to think it was because her partner's office is there.

      Work diaries are available, perhaps after thirty years.....bit late then. Thanks for the comment.

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