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No more stopovers for WA, NT politicians

Date
Liberal member for Canning, Don Randall, pictured during question time in 2009, came under fire for having claimed more than $5000 in 2012 for a trip to Melbourne, where he and his wife attended a West Coast Eagles AFL game.

Liberal member for Canning, Don Randall, pictured during question time in 2009, came under fire for having claimed more than $5000 in 2012 for a trip to Melbourne, where he and his wife attended a West Coast Eagles AFL game. Photo: Stefan Postles

Politicians heading to Canberra from Western Australia and the Northern Territory can no longer charge taxpayers for overnight stopovers unless they prove no connecting flight is available.

Previously, taxpayers would cover a hotel stay for those travelling across the country if they were "required to break a journey".

But changes to travel rules, which came into effect this week, mean MPs can only claim if they certify the break was "caused by there being no same-day connecting flight reasonably available".

Liberal MP Don Randall came under fire for having claimed more than $5000 in 2012 for a trip to Melbourne, where he and his wife attended a West Coast Eagles AFL game.

The WA politician said the reason for the trip was "sittings of parliament".

He later said it was within entitlements because West Australian politicians were allowed to break up their trips to and from Canberra.

The independent remuneration tribunal made the new determination on Monday and it came into effect from Wednesday.

The rules also have been tightened for family members travelling with politicians.

They'll now only get taxpayer funding for their travel if they spend less than a day at the location without the MP.

Anyone arriving more than 24 hours before the politician or leaving more than 24 hours after them won't get a travel allowance.

Politicians representing the largest electorates will get an extra $32,000 a year to spend on charter transport under the changes.

AAP

10 comments

  • Well done Don Randall. Your colleagues will be basting you for "kicking an own goal". Greedy pig

    Commenter
    Johnny
    Location
    Perth
    Date and time
    February 27, 2014, 11:47AM
    • and yet there have been no demonstrations outside his electorate office by constituents demanding his resignation - go figure

      Commenter
      Saint Matthew
      Date and time
      February 27, 2014, 4:47PM
  • They travel in business class at our expense, how could they possibly require a "break" in a journey?

    Commenter
    AussieA
    Date and time
    February 27, 2014, 12:13PM
    • That might be well and fine, but how can Don Randall claim it as "sittings of parliament" and clearly it wasn't, why isn't he being charged with fraud.

      Commenter
      BigD
      Location
      Perth
      Date and time
      February 27, 2014, 12:20PM
      • Because there is no political gain to doing it...

        Slipper only went that way because the Opposition smelled blood. He wasn't allowed to pay back the money like Don was...

        Commenter
        MrSmith
        Location
        Perth
        Date and time
        February 27, 2014, 5:22PM
    • And Federal Labor politicians have been stopped from having overnight strippers.

      Commenter
      Shaking Eagle
      Date and time
      February 27, 2014, 2:10PM
      • Surely if he had to watch an Eagles game it is punishment enough.

        Commenter
        fred
        Date and time
        February 27, 2014, 2:15PM
        • My employer doesn't pay for my family members to travel with me to meetings- why is it reasonable that Tax Payers flip the bill for politicians families? Politicians are supposed to represent the average people- it's time their packages are representative of average people.

          Commenter
          Why?
          Date and time
          February 27, 2014, 3:16PM
          • that Don Randall is still a member of Parliament after those bogus trips he took says it all. Politicians will still do what Randall did - i.e. see if anyone notices and then simply hand the money back without repercussions if found out

            Commenter
            Saint Matthew
            Date and time
            February 27, 2014, 3:31PM
            • Don Randell has finally done something for the Australian people..............

              Commenter
              Johnny
              Location
              Perth
              Date and time
              February 27, 2014, 3:38PM
              Comments are now closed
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