Federal Assistant Treasurer Stuart Robert says he “wasn’t paying enough attention” when he accrued $38,000 in taxpayer-funded internet bills at his Gold Coast home.
The Department of Finance forced the member for Fadden to repay the costs after Fairfax Media revealed he had racked up more than $1000 a month for his data at his Nerang home since 2016.
In May this year, Mr Robert charged taxpayers $2832 for his monthly bill – this roughly equates to 300 gigabytes of data.
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The Assistant Treasurer told MyGC he took “full responsibility”.
“I have this (4G) service that put in place by the Department of Finance, they facilitated and approved it,” he said.
“When it became clear the 4G was put in place, it had exorbitant back-end costs, I put my hand in the air and said this is not in line with community standards.
“I acknowledge I didn’t put it in, I didn’t approve, it but I’ll take responsibility.”
“These things are all reported on our, there’s a management report that comes out every month and it goes through every single expense and I probably just wasn’t paying enough attention.”
Mr Robert says he was probably the only Federal MP who had to have this internet system set up and that he’s repaid all costs.