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Idyllic Cocos islands nice spot for a ‘family reunion’

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Dubious Travel Claims | Liberal Party | QED
Liberal Party

Idyllic Cocos islands nice spot for a ‘family reunion’

April 2015

Taxpayers footed the bill for family members of Coalition MPs Luke Simpkins and Natasha Griggs to fly to the idyllic Cocos Islands in the Indian Ocean for a weekend stay, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Department of Finance records reportedly show Ms Griggs’ husband Paul flew from Darwin to Cocos via Perth and Christmas Island at a cost of $4385. The bill for Mr Simpkins’ wife Kelly and two daughters to travel from Perth via Christmas Island was $5100.

Air fares for the family members to Cocos appear to have been funded under “family reunion” provisions of the parliamentary entitlements system.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, questions were raised about the appropriateness of using the family reunion provisions because travel records suggest Mr Simpkins and Ms Griggs both spent the previous week in their electorates.

Mr Simpkins, a WA Liberal MP, lost his seat to Labor’s Anne Aly in the 2016 election, while Ms Griggs, a Northern Territory Country Liberal MP, was appointed Administrator of the Australian Indian Ocean Territories in October 2017.

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Q.E.D: The case for a federal ICAC

What's a rort?

Conflicts of Interest

Redirecting funding to pet hobbies; offering jobs to the boys without a proper tender process; secretly bankrolling candidates in elections; taking up private sector jobs in apparent breach of parliament’s code of ethics, the list goes on.

Deceptive Conduct

Claiming that greenhouse gas emissions have gone down when the facts clearly show otherwise; breaking the law on responding to FoI requests; reneging on promised legislation; claiming credit for legislation that doesn’t exist; accepting donations that breach rules. You get the drift of what behaviour this category captures.

Election Rorts

In the months before the last election, the Government spent hundreds of millions of dollars of Australian taxpayers’ money on grants for sports, community safety, rural development programs and more. Many of these grants were disproportionally awarded to marginal seats, with limited oversight and even less accountability.

Dubious Travel Claims

Ministerial business that just happens to coincide with a grand final or a concert; electorate business that must be conducted in prime tourist locations, or at the same time as party fundraisers. All above board, maybe, but does it really pass the pub test? Or does it just reinforce the fact that politicians take the public for mugs?

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