Joyce defends travel expenses claim
CANBERRA: Barnaby Joyce has defended his use of taxpayer-funded travel expenses to stay in Canberra for almost two months while the Federal Parliament wasn’t sitting, saying he was then ‘‘minister for everything’’.
The former deputy prime minister was on Thursday cleared of misusing his expenses to spend time with his adviser-turned-partner Vikki Campion.
The New England MP claimed at least $16 000 in refunds for 58 days he spent in Canberra in 2017 when parliament wasn’t sitting. That compared to just 12 nights in 2015 and in 2016.
The Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority said it had to take the exNationals leader at his word that he was telling the truth about his Canberra stays.
Mr Joyce said he always expected to be cleared by the expenses authority.