10 JULY 2019
The Taxpayers’ Union can reveal that Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt has spent $147,243 on his ratepayer-funded purchase card since late 2016 (the beginning of this term in local office).
Taxpayers’ Union researcher Luke Redward says “Tim Shadbolt has shown considerable fiscal irresponsibility in his latest term of office, spending inordinate amounts of money on frivolous or personal things.”
“Seven different times, his card was used for ‘accommodation for Mayor Shadbolt and Family’. Ratepayers might be surprised to learn that the Mayor is using their money to take his family on junkets.”
Other expenses included spending $19,534 on books and magazines, $8,051 on conference fees, $3,256 on wristbands, $2,662 in donations to private charity, and $1,854 at liquor stores.
Mayor Shadbolt also spent nearly $3,113 on maintenance for his famous ratepayer-bought Chrysler 300C, revealed earlier in the year to be the most expensive mayoral vehicle in the country. “It’s no wonder that the Council is reviewing the cost of its fleet if existing vehicles are kicking up so much in maintenance costs.”
“We sent the same request to every urban council in New Zealand and Mayor Shadbolt’s indulgence dwarfs that of comparable mayors. For example, Queenstown Lakes and Hamilton City councils reported their Mayors’ spending for this period at $7,280 and $7,358 respectively.”
“Ratepayers might be concerned that the Mayor uses so much public money on gifts and personal adventures. Perhaps in the future he could personally pay for his family getaways and bottle shop runs?”