Sinodinos’ office not open for business

The stood-aside Assistant Treasurer, Senator Arthur Sinodinos, has cost the Government more than just its reputation, with revelations that taxpayers have been forced to foot the bill for the non-existent Minister’s Sydney office.

In response to a Question on Notice, the Government has admitted that it has so far spent around $80,000 on rent for the Senator’s unused Ministerial Office at 1 Bligh Street, Sydney.

The mounting rental cost has been accruing since March, when the Minister stood aside from his role amid an ongoing Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) investigation.

Chair of Labor’s Waste Watch committee, Pat Conroy, said the Government needed to justify this extravagant waste, which represented a new low in the political scandal engulfing the NSW Liberal Party.

“The Prime Minister and the Treasurer have tried to tell us we are facing a Budget Emergency, but it seems no expense is spared when it comes to their Ministry,” Mr Conroy said.

“At the same time as they are imposing higher fuel costs on motorists, increasing health care costs for families and trying to cut pensions, it seems they are not prepared to reign in their own spending.

“Senator Sinodinos has stood aside from his position, but unfortunately taxpayers are forced to continue to pay as if he was still doing the job.

“We don’t pay for Ministerial offices to be empty. They are not rented for staff, they are rented for Ministers.”