Labor MP Tony Burke spent more than $12,000 of taxpayer funds for a family trip to Uluru, according to the ABC.
Department of Finance records show that in April 2012, the then environment minister Tony Burke took a four-day return trip from Sydney to Uluru and claimed his own flight worth $2,181.43 plus four “family traveller” airfares worth $8,656.48. According to the ABC his office said the visit to Central Australia involved official business, including meetings with managers and rangers at the Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park and members of the nearby Aboriginal community of Mutitjulu.
Burke subsequently conceded taxpayers should not have been charged for his children to take business class flights to Uluru. “While I am completely confident that the questions in particular relating to Uluru and Cairns have been 100 per cent within the rules, they have also been completely beyond community expectations.
According to the ABC, Mr Burke requested a Finance Department review of his family travel claims over the past five years, but said he would not repay the cost of the tickets at this stage.
On December 10, 2020, more than eight years after the trip, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that Burke had repaid $8,000 in the airfares. Read more.
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