SCATHING AUDITOR-GENERAL REPORT: $26.7M OVERSPEND ON DONOR’S $3M PIECE OF LAND
A Liberal Party donor is the beneficiary of a $26.7 million overspend on a piece of land valued at only $3 million purchased by the Liberal Government.
The Auditor-General has today released a scathing report into the Morrison Government’s $30m purchase of the Leppington Triangle, a 12.26 hectare triangle of land that in a few decades time may be used to build a second runway at Western Sydney Airport.
Astonishingly, just eleven months after completing the deal the Government itself valued the land at only $3m – a tenth of the price it had paid to the landowner.
The price paid per hectare by the Morrison Government was 22 times higher than the price paid by the NSW Government for it’s portion of the Leppington Triangle.
According to Department of Infrastructure records, the Morrison Government had undertaken nine valuations of the land. The purchase price was 4 times higher than the highest of these valuations.
On the date of the purchase, the agricultural land was leased back to the seller, Leppington Pastoral Company, for ten years, with an option to renew for a further decade.
Leppington Pastoral Company has previously donated to the Liberal Party.
According to the Auditor-General:
“The Department of Infrastructure did not exercise appropriate due diligence in its acquisition of the Leppington Triangle land for the future development of the Western Sydney Airport. In the course of this audit it became clear that aspects of the operations of the department, both during and after the acquisition, fell short of ethical standards.”
The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure must immediately address these incredible findings and explain how his Government so comprehensively wasted Australian tax-payer’s money.
If Australians cannot trust the Morrison Government with this infrastructure spend, it will be impossible to trust them with future investments.
21 SEPTEMBER 2020