Mayor Paul Pisasale’s election campaign fund has reportedly received more than 30 undeclared donations worth $150,000 since the council 2012 election.
Queensland’s government is investigating the mayor of Ipswich following revelations he received up to $150,000 in undeclared donations.
Councillors don’t need to declare donations to the Queensland Electoral Commission, but are legally required to update their register of interests.
Mayor Paul Pisasale’s election campaign fund, Forward Ipswich, has reportedly received over 30 separate donations worth $150,000 since the 2012 council election.
None of those donations had been entered in his register.
Local Government Minister David Crisafulli says Mr Pisasale’s register and the fund are now being investigated.
“We will always investigate issues raised to ensure transparency,” he said in a brief statement.
Under state laws a councillor who fails to complete or update a register of interest can be fined up to $9350.
Those who intentionally fail to complete or update a register of interests can be fined up to $11,000 and be disqualified for holding office for four years.
Mr Pisasale has been under the spotlight recently for setting up meetings with Japanese developer-turned-donor Sekisui and Premier Campbell Newman.
Sekisui has donated money to the mayor’s fund and has been a major supporter of its Ripley Valley development in Ipswich.
The Japanese company also had a business relationship with Australian Water Holdings (AWH), which is being investigated by NSW’s Independent Commission Against Corruption.
ABC television 730 program reported that AWH’s chief executive Nick di Girolamo and its Queensland subsidiary director, Wayne Myers, met with Mr Pisasale between 2008 and 2010 to discuss possible business.
Mr Pisasale admitted being taken to two ritzy Brisbane restaurants, but denied going to nearby strip club with the men.
“I was there that night … just talking and getting an update on what was happening, but I can assure you I didn’t go to any strip club,” he told the ABC.