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The Clintons and Lucy and I

The Clintons and Lucy and I

One can’t escape that the two families seem to like ‘foundations’, it has a cozy sound, one of philanthropy through the pure heart of a samaritan—even Mother Theresa like. Past Australian governments simply adored the Clinton Foundation to the tune of more than $400 million. Gillard is in there somewhere also. Perhaps ‘foundation’ was the lure for Malcolm? The Great Barrier Reef Foundation sounds regal—don’t you think? The Clinton Foundation $400 million odd. The GBRF $444 million—not too much and not too little. Gee, big Mal has a lot of good friends—today. Tomorrow—I dunnow!

Malcolm Turnbull’s office has confirmed that two of the directors of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation — the recipient of a $444 million grant from his government awarded without tender — may have been hosted at the Prime Minister’s home by wife Lucy.

Source: News Corp

PM fends off Lucy’s links to $444m reef grant recipients

The Australian can reveal the head of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation’s philanthropy committee, Stephen Fitzgerald, a one-time head of Mr Turnbull’s former investment bank Goldman Sachs, was on the board of the European Business Advisory Council at the same time as Mrs Turnbull.

Mr Fitzgerald is also on the council of advisers for the US Studies Centre in Sydney — where Mrs Turnbull is patron — and was on that council while Mrs Turnbull held the role of deputy chair between 2012 and 2015.

The chair of the philanthropy committee for the Great Barrier Reef Foundation before Mr Fitzgerald, Stephen Roberts, was also on the council of advisers for the US Studies Centre at the same time Mrs Turnbull held ceremonial roles. Mr Roberts resigned from his foundation role in June after being charged with ­alleged criminal cartel conduct.

Asked yesterday whether Mr Fitzgerald or Mr Roberts had been to the Turnbulls’ home, a spokesman for the Prime Minister said: “Prior to 2015, as deputy chair of the US Studies Centre, Mrs Turnbull occasionally hosted USSC directors and advisers at her home.”

The revelations will raise more questions about the grant to the foundation but the Prime Minister’s office insists the decision was not a result of connections.

The Australian understands Mrs Turnbull concedes she knows Mr Fitzgerald but says she has not seen him for more than three years and cannot “recall” discussing the Great Barrier Reef Foundation with him.

“Mrs Turnbull is not a director of the European Australian Business Council and has not been for more than a year,” a spokesman for the Prime Minister said.

“The PM’s parliamentary disclosures reflect this. (Mrs Turnbull) has not spoken directly with either man for several years, and does not recall discussing the funding of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation with them.”

He said: “The PM has not discussed this issue with Mr Fitzgerald or Mr Roberts. The government is preserving the Great Barrier Reef for future generations. This initiative will secure jobs and improve the health of the reef. The foundation is the best-placed body to deliver on these goals.”

Asked whose idea the grant was, Mr Turnbull’s spokesman would only say: “The proposal was developed within the Department of the Environment and Energy in consultation with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Department of Finance, Treasury, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and the Great Barrier Reef Foundation.”

The Australian does not suggest the grant was made improperly.

Mr Turnbull has conceded he knows Mr Fitzgerald but says he does not know another Goldman Sachs boss, Keith Tuffley, who was on the Great Barrier Reef Foundation board until he resigned on federal budget day, May 8.

Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg repeatedly refused to say on 2GB yesterday whether the decision to give the $444m to the foundation without tender was Mr Turnbull’s idea. “It’s the government’s idea and it was one of the major announcements … in the budget because we want to save the Barrier Reef,” he said.

“This is the single largest ever investment in the ­Barrier Reef.”

Labor senator Kristina Keneally said: “There is something fishy about this grant.

“How does a prime minister give away $444m of public money without due diligence, competitive tender or grant application?”

“If Malcolm Turnbull and his family has a personal relationship with one or more of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation board members, that’s even more reason (he) should have ensured this grant decision was taken at arm’s length from him, with the highest standards of probity and contestability, so as to give the public confidence in the decision.”

Malcolm Turnbull
Prime Minister, former head of Goldman Sachs Australia 1997-2002.

Lucy Turnbull
Former deputy chair and director of US Studies Centre 2012-15 and on the board of directors of the centre 2007-15, including a time when both Great Barrier Reef Foundation directors Stephen Fitzgerald and Stephen Roberts were on the council of advisers for the US Studies Centre. Also on the board of the European Australian Business Council at the same time as Mr Fitzgerald was a fellow director.

James Brown

The Turnbulls’ son-in-law. A former non-resident fellow at the US Studies Centre.

Stephen Fitzgerald

Former chairman of Goldman Sachs after joining in 1992. Named a managing director in 1998 and a partner in 2002. The current chair of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation Board’s philanthropy committee. On the board of the European Australian Business Council at the same time as Lucy Turnbull. On the council of advisers for the US Studies Centre at the same time Mrs Turnbull was on the board of directors. The PM’s office confirms Mr Fitzgerald may have been hosted by Mrs Turnbull at the Turnbulls’ home.

Stephen Roberts

Former head of Citigroup. Was charged with alleged criminal cartel conduct related to his time at Citigroup. Was chair of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation philanthropy committee in 2016 and 2017. Resigned from Great Barrier Reef Foundation board in June after he was charged. Was on the council of advisers for the US Studies Centre at the same time as Mrs Turnbull was on the board of directors. The PM’s office confirms he may have been hosted at the Turnbulls’ home.

Alex Turnbull
The Turnbulls’ son. Worked for Goldman Sachs in Hong Kong. The PM’s office says Alex Turnbull ‘does not recall meeting Stephen Fitzgerald’ and ‘they did not work together at Goldman Sachs’.

{ 17 comments… add one }
  • Pensioner Pete 10/08/2018, 5:43 am

    Corruption, pure and simple.

    • Finn 10/08/2018, 6:18 am

      Yep

    • Margaret 10/08/2018, 8:16 am

      I agree. This allocation of $444 million to the Great Barrier reef Foundation, without a tender has all the hallmarks of corruption. The reef is fine. What are they going to spend the money on?

    • Aktosplatz 10/08/2018, 11:20 am

      Totally Agree

  • Muphin 10/08/2018, 7:39 am

    Perhaps it is a competition – who can come up with a better ponzi scheme to rip the people off – Clinton or Turnbull.

    It has become common knowledge that our piece of rectal matter, aka Malcolm Turnbull, has no integrity or sense of morality. He is an entity (he has not earned the right to be called a man) that cannot stand up to a benchmark that he has set.

    Mr Harbourside Mansion has no scruples when it comes to money, especially other peoples money, ours.

    • DT 10/08/2018, 8:56 am

      Ten years now of being exploited by corrupt politicians and their foreign maates.

  • Dave 10/08/2018, 8:00 am

    He will have a parliamentary inquiry into a labor party bully, but nothing to see here you lowlife tax paying scumbags, get back to work.
    Let’s get a judicial watch onto our government, it is doing great in the USA.
    Alexander Downers name gets a few mentions lately with his involvement with a London pub conversation, he’s also a past donator to Clinton.
    Get the popcorn ready, we may see a few Australian politicians swooshing around in the swamp soon.
    Corruption at the highest level.

  • Lorraine 10/08/2018, 8:39 am

    this story will not go away Malcolm is the idiot that could not lie straight in bed

  • DT 10/08/2018, 8:53 am
  • Maryanne 10/08/2018, 9:07 am

    When asked whose idea the grant was, Mr Turnbull’s spokesman would only say: “The proposal was developed within the Department of the Environment and Energy in consultation with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Department of Finance, Treasury, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and the Great Barrier Reef Foundation.”

    Sir Humphrey would be proud of that evasive answer, but I think the question needs a truthful answer. Some one person came up with this idea whose idea was it?

  • Botswana O'Hooligan 10/08/2018, 9:28 am

    If you know Lucy like I know Lucy etc. etc. etc. I had a lot to do with GBRMPA back in the early 80’s and for all intents and purposes they were and probably still are, a pack of useless money wasting bastards.

  • John E 10/08/2018, 9:42 am

    What can they do with $444m. They can dig a tunnel to divert some of the flow of the Burdekin river inland. This, as well as providing water inland will lessen the effect of flood run-off onto the GBR.

    • Aktosplatz 10/08/2018, 11:21 am

      They can also re invest some of it for themselves like everyone else appears to be doing.

  • bushwanker 10/08/2018, 10:47 am

    “This initiative will secure jobs”………..Yep, jobs for the boys and Turnbull’s bum lickers yet struggling Aussie farmers get sweet fu@k-all.

  • flav1945 10/08/2018, 10:56 am

    Surely their task should be the building of at least three new dam/weirs in good catchment areas adjacent to the GBR ? This would serve two sensible purposes … 1) Stop the seepage
    (and waste) of water from inland rivers effecting the health of the GBR … 2) assist with
    drought-proofing of central and far north Qld.

    • DT 10/08/2018, 11:10 am

      Which was part of Coalition policy when Tony Abbott was Opposition Leader and Prime Minister.

      The centre piece being extension of the WA Ord River Irrigation Area into the NT and QLD, dams on the “wild rivers”.

  • DT 10/08/2018, 11:59 am

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