Ombudsman reveals huge drinks bill hidden behind “room hire”

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Carol Altmann – The Terrier

More from Ombudsman’s report: ROOM HIRE #1:

At last we know the truth behind the first of two “room hires” at Lady Bay Hotel, this one on 6 Sept 2018.

The ‘room hire’ was not room hire at all, but in fact an unofficial thankyou party for a council staff member, organised by former tourism head David McMahon and paid for on his credit card.

The invoice was a foil to hide a drinks bill of $538.50 that included three bottles of red wine for a total cost of $325. (Food made up the total bill of $736.50).

According to the Ombudsman’s report, City Growth Manager Andrew Paton and Director Corporate Strategies Peter Utri both attended this function and offered to pay their share as they did not consider it work related.

Mr McMahon had a different view: ” I can’t speak for them, but I went there under the full knowledge that this was a work ‘thank you’ function. I don’t remember anyone having a discussion …”

Mr McMahon’s lawyer had a similar view and told the Ombudsman’s investigation:

“[David McMahon] was asked to arrange a thank you dinner by his employer for a staff member. There was never any discussion about payment. His employer attended the dinner. There was no offer to pay or contribute to the bill.”

The second “room hire”, as it turns out, was also a euphemism for a huge drinks bill.

I will post that in a moment.  (My head is swooning at the lies.)

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