News

DFAT sends 23 staff to Paris to learn about saving money

IS it possible that sometimes you need to spend money to save money?

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade seems to hope so, after it sent 23 officers from Canberra to Paris to attend a department pow-wow about being more thrifty.

They were flown on business class return travel.

Fairfax reports that while DFAT has not confirmed the cost of the flights, it estimates that the flights alone cost at least $175,000, and that's assuming the department booked the cheapest possible flights.

The group stayed in the four-star Mercure Paris Centre Eiffel Tower Hotel, where even basic rooms start at $530 per night.

Fairfax estimates the total cost for the two-day trip cost taxpayers about $215,000, so officers could be taught by Australia's ambassador to France Stephen Brady.

There is no indication as to why the lessons could not have been taught by video conferencing.

A DFAT spokeswoman has said because the event included a majority of staff based in Europe, holding it in Paris was cheaper than holding the conference in Australia.

The September jaunt for Australian public servants is likely to jar with taxpayers who on Tuesday were told not to expect a wage increase any time soon.

Worker wages in the past 12 months increased by only 2%, the lowest ever seen since the data collection began in the late 1990s.

Topics:  dfat executives pay



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

Elderly man's stand off with cops over unpaid $200

Police from Coffs Clarence LAC search the vehicle driven by a Hong Kong national for drugs and cash.

HE SMASHED a woman's phone over at $200 debt.

EXCLUSIVE: $300m Rookwood Weir project edges closer

Maddy Storey from Glenmore High School, where the students are protecting the Fitzroy River turtle in an envirofund project.

MULTI-MILLION dollar dam project takes huge leap forward.

'Underpaid' Rockhampton workers miss out on millions

Photo Tom Huntley / The Observer

Thousands of Rockhampton workers will need to chat with their boss

Local Partners

The first Baywatch trailer is here, and it's hilarious

From left, Jon Bass, Alex Daddario, Zac Efron, Dwayne Johnson, Kelly Rohrbach, and Ilfenesh Hadera in a scene from the movie Baywatch.

DWAYNE Johnson and Zac Efron star in TV series reboot.

Sir Mick Jagger a dad again at 73

Mick Jagger... dad again at 73

Ageing rocker obviously still getting Satisfaction

Doco tells the story of Aussie surfboard pioneers

Gordon Woods (far right) in a 1966 ad for his surf shop. He is the subject of a documentary about the Brookvale Mafia airing on Foxtel.

THE Brookvale six were united in the love of their craft.

Kernaghan's a 'boy from the bush' with a timeless quality

Country music singer Lee Kernaghan.

Lee Kernaghan is celebrating the 25th year of his breakthrough song.

Irina Shayk and Bradley Cooper happy as baby looms

Irina Shayk and Bradley Cooper are in an "extremely happy place"

Brad Pitt bids to keep custody battle private

Brad Pitt will go to court to keep his custody battle private

Ipswich City Properties asset portfolio retains its value

Ipswich City Council Administration Building, South Street, Ipswich. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times

New website launched by Ipswich City Council

Rocky's 10 cheapest houses on the market right now

10 cheap houses for sale right now

EXPLAINED: What will become of Stanage Bay after expansion?

CONCERNS AIRED: Tina Mitchell, Amanda Roberson and Maree Haynes from Stanage Bay to meet with Defence Department representatives.

Residents concerns about impact of Shoalwater expansion on town

Shoalwater expansion land buy up raises concerns

Rees R and Sydney Jones have just under 20 clients living in the expansion area which stretches as far north as Styx River.

Rees R & Sydney Jones have just under 20 clients in expansion zone

INSIDE STORY: The highlights of your $150 million CBD

GRAND PLAN: The highlights of the Ipswich CBD redevelopment and where they will be located.

Work on city heart's radical transformation to begin next year

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!