Emma Husar welcomes scrutiny of expenses as she defends taxpayer-funded trip

Emma Husar welcomes scrutiny of expenses as she defends taxpayer-funded trip
Emma Husar welcomes scrutiny of expenses as she defends taxpayer-funded trip

Emma Husar has asked the independent parliamentary expenses authority to review her use of taxpayer entitlements, following revelations she attended a concert with a friend while on a work trip.

Husar has denied any wrongdoing after News Corp published photos of her and a friend, a senior New South Wales police officer, at a Bruno Mars concert in Brisbane in 14 March, after attending a day-long NDIS hearing in Cairns.

Husar missed the public meeting the next day, but said she had two meetings in Brisbane on 15 March, and while she was confident no taxpayer funds had been misspent, she would ask the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority to “double-check and review, as I take the use of taxpayers’ money extremely seriously”.

Emma Husar MP (@emmahusarmp)

To be abundantly clear, no work expenses were used to attend a concert.
Was in Cairns on 14 March to attend a day-long committee hearing on the NDIS. On 15 March, I had two meetings in Brisbane with two organisations to discuss domestic violence policy issues.

“Emma was in Cairns on 14 March to attended a day-long public committee hearing on the national disability insurance scheme,” a spokesman for Husar, who is on personal leave following the reveal NSW Labor had launched an investigation into allegations of bullying and harassment of staff in her office.

“On 15 March, she attended meetings in Brisbane with two organisations – the Micah Projects and DV Connect – to discuss domestic violence policy consistent best-practice national standards for women’s shelters.

“These meetings were relevant to Emma’s role as secretary of the oppositions status of women caucus committee and noting her involvement in domestic violence policy development.”

The spokesman would not answer when the meetings were arranged, but said the concert tickets were a birthday gift from a friend.

Husar tweeted much the same response, but added she would ask the parliamentary review board to look over her travel claims, despite her confidence “I’ve always acted within the rules”.

Emma Husar MP (@emmahusarmp)

To be abundantly clear, no work expenses were used to attend a concert.
Was in Cairns on 14 March to attend a day-long committee hearing on the NDIS. On 15 March, I had two meetings in Brisbane with two organisations to discuss domestic violence policy issues.

Last month Buzzfeed revealed Husar was the subject of an independent investigation, after reports of bullying within her office, with NSW barrister John Joseph Whelan engaged to review the complaints.

Husar has received support from the leader, Bill Shorten, who says he was not aware of the allegations until Buzzfeed’s media request shortly before it published the story, although Anthony Albanese said he learned of the pending investigation at the NSW state Labor conference.

Asked about the latest revelations, Tanya Plibersek told Sky News that she was not going to comment on the details, given the investigation was under way.

“[The] second thing I’d say is I am told that those reports are inaccurate,” she said.

“The third thing I’d say is it is absolutely vital that every single dollar of taxpayer funding is used appropriately.

“There is no question of that. So if there are any issues like this to investigate they should be looked at properly. Every single dollar of taxpayer funding should be used appropriately.”

Husar went on personal leave late last month, saying she felt it best to take her family out of the spotlight, announcing via a statement she had asked the Australian federal police to look into threats made against her.

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