When Michael McCormack was elected National’s leader, Barnaby went to the back bench and complained about living on a backbencher’s salary. Morrison appointed him as the Special Envoy for drought. People assumed that he would help the government come up with a drought policy or at least some detailed findings in his report.
Alas, there was no report. In fact, taxpayers saw nothing of what he produced despite him saying there was multiple correspondence and a lot of text messages. The PM said that producing a report was never part of the terms of reference surrounding the appointment, saying the role was “focused on getting into communities and talking to farmers in drought”.
The cost of this appointment was $675,000 in expenses for less than three weeks on ground. He claimed $675,000 in expenses for the work, and was allocated two staff members to conduct his work at a cost of an estimated $200,000.
Following on from this Prime minister says Joyce has done his job and announced a further $100m in drought funding. He was never asked to “write a book” according to the PM.
One of the important tasks undertaken by Barnaby during his time as Drought Envoy was to spend $2,600 on a charter flight from Melbourne to Horsham to stand alongside Nationals candidate at regional show
David Littleproud was asked where the report was and finally admitted to parliament that no such document exists, however, it was claimed that a lot of the correspondence was by Text Message! The PM never released the many SMS’s Barnaby wrote despite Barnaby saying he’d be happy to have them released. The PM refused a FoI request to release them. Bottom line is that the taxpayers have seen nothing of his work, except the bill!
Lots more information here:Tweet