News

Dutton's $1k limo ride: ComCar left outside Coast fundraiser

FEDERAL Immigration Minister Peter Dutton spent almost $1000 in a single day having the government's limousine service ferry him around the Sunshine Coast, instead of using his own car or getting one of his numerous staffers to give him a lift.

Mr Dutton also refused to answer questions on whether he felt he operated within the spirit of the rules surrounding MP's expenses by having a ComCar wait for him while he attended a Liberal Party function on the day in question.

The $956.30 ComCar claim was the largest filed by Mr Dutton and larger than any car service claim filed by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull during the most recent round of expenses disclosed.  

ComCars charge at a rate of $78.60 an hour meaning Mr Dutton used the car service for more than 12 hours that day.

When the claim was queried with Mr Dutton's office a spokeswoman said: "Mr Dutton travelled from Brisbane to the Sunshine Coast for several community round table meetings, a meeting with the Mayor, consultations with individuals and to make an announcement regarding the future of the Sunshine Coast Airport."

A subsequent search of Mr Dutton's press releases confirmed he announced federal funding for improved security at Sunshine Coast Airport, with the then Liberal candidate for the seat of Fairfax Ted O'Brien, on the day in question, Friday February 5, 2016.

However there were no releases relating to any other announcements or events.

A search of Mr Dutton's social media returned a similar result, however, the Facebook account of state Liberal MP for Buderim, Steve Dickson shows what Mr Dutton got up to that evening.

"Welcoming the Hon Peter Dutton back to the Sunshine Coast with Ted O'Brien at Red Sea Rock Steak and Seafood," Mr Dickson posted at 7pm - along with a photo of the trio outside the Ocean St eatery.

Fairfax Liberal MP Ted O'Brien shared the same post three days later saying: "A great night with Peter Dutton at Red Sea Steak and Seafood Restaurant in Maroochydore last Friday."

Ted O'Brien's Facebook post
Ted O'Brien's Facebook post

Today Mr Dutton declined to answer questions on what the event entailed, however, the owner of the now closed restaurant, Neil Deakin, described it as a Liberal Party event.

"It was a launch thing for their campaign," Mr Deakin said.

"There were about 90 people there."

Liberal sources have since confirmed the event was a party fundraiser.

In 2015 then Speaker Bronwyn Bishop was forced to resign after it emerged she had charged the taxpayer more than $6000 to charter a chopper to a Liberal Party function.

A subsequent review of MP's entitlements, completed in February 2016, recommended clarifying the rules so expenses couldn't be claimed for party fundraisers.

The findings of the review are yet to be made law - despite the tribunal which considers entitlements directing MPs to them when it handed down its most recent finding. 

Topics:  comcar editors picks expenses liberal maroochydore party fundraiser peter dutton sunshine coast


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Thanks for 'The Big Help' says Pete

CUT ABOVE: Sophie Moeller, editor of Lismore Echo, having her hair done by Peter Crowley from Pomstar Hairdressers in The Star Court Arcade, Lismore.

Pomstar is on the pulse and the feeling for Lismore is good

WATCH: See inside Flock's new home

SURVIVORS: Partners Sarah Jones and Kymberlee Strow have reopened Flock on Woodlark Street.

First look inside the new Flock premises

Answer The Salvos knock for help

Major Lindsay Reeves  from The Salvation Army based in Goonellabah.

It is Red Shield Appeal time again in Lismore

Local Partners

Our Kids Ball gives boost to retail in CBD

Post flood grant money a "blessing” for dress designer and Our Kids sponsor Julia Taranto

First female superhero film in 12 years

AMAZON: Actress Gal Gadot in a scene from the film Wonder Woman.

Wonder Woman opens next Thursday

What to expect at Birds of Tokyo's Ipswich gig

The band will perform at the Racehorse Hotel on Friday.

BAND member Glen Sarangapany talks music, pub grub and doing shoeys

Pauly puts stereo back into stereotypes

PAULY: Paul Fenech is a comedian of Maltese and Aboriginal descent.

'A bourbon-fuelled bogan subwoofer bonanza of comedy.'

Rebel Wilson says she didn’t have to lie to make it

I’M not glamorous, but that doesn’t make me a liar: that’s the message from Rebel Wilson on her second day in the witness box.

Kim Kardashian slammed over Manchester tribute

Kim Kardashian's tribute to Manchester didn't go down well

Top Gun 2 movie is happening, Tom Cruise confirms

Tom Cruise in a scene from the movie Top Gun.

TOM Cruise delights fans with announcement on Sunrise.

The first Baywatch movie reviews are in

From left, Jon Bass, Alex Daddario, Zac Efron, Dwayne Johnson, Kelly Rohrbach, and Ilfenesh Hadera in a scene from the movie Baywatch.

Critics were less than impressed.

Boyfriend loses it over sex lie

Stacey Louise’s sex lie destroys her relationship.

SEVEN Year Switch’s Stacey told a fib about her sex life.

Why Crowe’s thankful for those ‘bulls**t’ rumours

Russell Crowe and Terri Irwin in 2007.

Crowe and Terri Irwin have been dodging dating rumours for years now

MOVIE REVIEW: King Arthur - Legend of the Sword

Charlie Hunnam in a scene from the movie King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.

Why the critics have got Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur all wrong.

How Toowoomba house prices compare in Australia

For sale sign in front of home.

Here's what $700,000 will buy you in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Sydney

One of Maryborough's most historic homes is still for sale

FULL OF HISTORY: Trisha Moulds is owner of the historic Tinana state known as Rosehill. The beautiful home is currently for sale.

It has been the scene of both joy and tragedies over the years.

The face of the Sunshine Coast's overpriced rental crisis

Alyx Wilson had to rent a $385 unit in Currimundi because the market was too competitive for cheaper rental housing. She is now renting a room from friends who own a house in Currimundi, and says its much more affordable.

Young people feel the strain in competitive, expensive rental market

WATCH: Take a tour of a tradie's dream home

5a Bruce Hiskens Court, Norman Gardens, going for $720,000. INSET: Lea Taylor.

Huge block with potential for anything

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!