April – May, 2018
First it was a $14,000 private jet to watch a Commonwealth Games basketball game to sit with Prince Charles; a month later it was a $20,000 jet to watch the Mustangs ice hockey team in Melbourne.
Bridget McKenzie claimed $19,942 in travel expenses from Rockhampton to Melbourne for a chartered flight to watch the little known Mustangs ice hockey team. Her 1,700 kilometre direct flight to the Victorian capital, where she watched the Melbourne Mustangs, cost taxpayers $19,942, Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority data showed.
An equivalent commercial flight, with a stop-over in Brisbane, would have cost just $614. In addition to the $19,942 flight, taxpayers also stumped up another $500 in Commonwealth car bills to get her from Melbourne’s Essendon airport, taking the cost of her chartered transport from Rockhampton to Melbourne to $20,442.
The minister’s spokesman reportedly said a charter flight was chosen because no commercial flights were available to get the minister to Melbourne in time for an urgent meeting of the Australian Sports Commission Board.
Just one month earlier, Senator McKenzie splurged $13,955.00 of taxpayers’ money to sit near Prince Charles at the 2018 Commonwealth games. The then-sports minister took the ‘unscheduled’ flight from the Gold Coast to Cairns in April 2018, even though Australia wasn’t playing. Prince Charles was seated in the front row, just two spots away from Senator McKenzie. Her office said she took the $14,000 ‘unscheduled’ flight so she could represent then-prime minister Malcolm Turnbull in Cairns as Prince Charles visited Far North Queensland.
Julie Bishop’s $30k flight from Perth to Canberra
Julie Bishop stayed an extra day in Perth after completing her official public commitments so an empty jet flew from Canberra to Perth to pick up her and her partner David Panton to return them to the nation's capital at a cost to taxpayers of $30,000.
Tennis, cricket and rugby: Warren Truss a fan of them all
The Australian Open, State of Origin, the Ashes, rugby union Test - 2014 a very busy year for Nationals MP Warren Truss.
Taxpayers paid $2000 for Stuart Robert to attend Hillsong conference
Robert was a guest speaker at the Pentecostal church’s Sydney event where he delivered a lecture on how ‘innovative individuals’ are ‘influencing their pillar with the message of Jesus’.
Bowen bills taxpayers $2000 for four-hour trip to Adelaide
Chris Bowen billed taxpayers more than $2000 for a day trip to Adelaide, where he was the key speaker at a $500-a-head business lunch to raise money for South Australian Labor’s 2018 state election campaign.
Coalition ministers charge taxpayers $4500 for trip to $10,000-a-head fundraiser
Stuart Robert, Dan Tehan and Simon Birmingham charged taxpayers more than $4,500 for an overnight trip to Sydney where they mingled with mining and banking donors at a $10,000-a-head Liberal party fundraiser dinner hosted by Channel Nine.
Mathias Cormann’s $23,000 travel bill for Broome trips over five years
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann billed taxpayers more than $23,000 for weekend trips to the WA beach resort town of Broome with his wife over five years.
Barnaby Joyce’s debateable use of VIP jet for election bid
Barnaby Joyce spent more than $18,000 of taxpayer funds travelling to Armidale and Tamworth when he was trying to win the lower house seat of New England.
Albanese repays cost of Comcars for travel to party fundraiser
A spokesman for Anthony Albanese said the $126 cost of the Comcars had been repaid but would not say if the money was repaid before or after Guardian Australia lodged an FoI request for travel details.