Natalya Moore at The Curated Plate Long Lagoon Lunch at Novotel Twin Waters.
Natalya Moore at The Curated Plate Long Lagoon Lunch at Novotel Twin Waters.

REVEALED: Councillors dining out on foodie freebies

THERE'S no such thing as a free lunch, unless you happen to be a Coast councillor.

Ratepayer-sponsored foodie event The Curated Plate was the gift that kept being given, at least to some of the region's elected representatives.

Gifts recorded by Coast councillors in their updated register of interests showed $4478 worth of Curated Plate freebies were handed out to a number of councillors.

Councillors Jenny McKay, Christian Dickson, Ted Hungerford and Mayor Mark Jamieson were the only ones not to have a Curated Plate gift registered against their name.

Tourism and Major Events portfolio holder Cr Jason O'Pray was the most prominent at the council-sponsored Curated Plate events, scooping up $2260 worth of free tickets.

He was also given $310 worth of tickets to one of the events by the Maroochy RSL.

Preview for The Curated Plate. Kim McCosker (4 Ingredients) with Tourism, Sport and Major Events Portfolio Councillor, Jason O'Pray, and sample a selction of fresh produce from the Sunshine Coast area.
Preview for The Curated Plate. Kim McCosker (4 Ingredients) with Tourism, Sport and Major Events Portfolio Councillor, Jason O'Pray, and sample a selction of fresh produce from the Sunshine Coast area.

Crs Greg Rogerson ($650), Tim Dwyer ($580), Peter Cox ($398), Rick Baberowski ($300) and Steve Robinson ($290) were also gifted tickets from council to a variety of Curated Plate events.

Division 4 Councillor John Connolly was gifted four tickets worth $840 in total to a Curated Plate dinner in Mooloolaba by the Mooloolaba Surf Club.

The Curated Plate was hailed as giving attendees an "outstanding visitor experience" and was reported to have attracted more than 13,000 visitors to the region.

It appeared councillors had also grown fond of netball, on the back of the success of the Sunshine Coast Lightning franchise.

VIP tickets to Sunshine Coast Lightning games were given out by council to Crs Jamieson, Baberowski, Dwyer, Cox, McKay, O'Pray, Robinson and Rogerson in 2019.

The Curated Plate.
The Curated Plate.

Crs Baberowski, Dwyer, Cox, O'Pray and Rogerson all picked up tickets to the Suncorp Super Netball Grand Final in Brisbane on September 15, a number of them enjoying VIP access to the Lightning's unsuccessful attempt to win three straight.

Other quirky gifts that appeared on councillors' registers to-date in 2019 included a ticket to Elton John at Sunshine Coast Stadium on March 3, next year, for Cr Steve Robinson, from council.

The Elton John shows were spectacularly announced in late-June by then-Acting Mayor Tim Dwyer, who donned his best and brightest colours to reveal the superstar show headed to town.

Elton John will hold a concert at Sunshine Coast Stadium next year. Acting Mayor Tim Dwyer does an impersonation at the event announcement.
Elton John will hold a concert at Sunshine Coast Stadium next year. Acting Mayor Tim Dwyer does an impersonation at the event announcement.

Cr Dwyer was also gifted two, admit all enclosure cards for 2019-20 by Sunshine Coast Turf Club.

The Deputy Mayor, a former top-flight rugby league player, also picked up two VIP tickets to the Rabbitohs v Warriors NRL game in April from council, and VIP tickets and chairman's lounge access from Souths, as well as a VIP ticket from Melbourne Storm.

He was also gifted two adult and two child season passes to Caloundra Music Festival from council.

Cr Baberowski scored four tickets from council to the Horizon Festival's Galaxy of Suns performance and was flown to Sydney and put up as a speaker by the Smart Cities Expo World Forum.

DINING OUT: A snapshot from The Curated Plate website.
DINING OUT: A snapshot from The Curated Plate website.

Cr McKay was gifted three tickets worth $300 to a Lightning game in May.

Cr Jamieson's gifts in 2019 consisted of donated items to be sold at charity auctions, and a trip to Switzerland, with return flights, accommodation, meals and transfers covered by the Council of Mayors South East Queensland, as part of an Olympic delegation trip.

Cr Rogerson was given tickets to Under the Southern Stars, NRL Magic Round and two $455 season passes to the Caloundra Music Festival by council.

Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson and Federal Member for Fairfax Ted O'Brien MP flew to Switzerland to push for the Olympic Games to be held in Southeast Queensland. Photo: John McCutcheon / Sunshine Coast Daily
Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson and Federal Member for Fairfax Ted O'Brien MP flew to Switzerland to push for the Olympic Games to be held in Southeast Queensland. Photo: John McCutcheon / Sunshine Coast Daily

Cr O'Pray also scored a family Aqua Park pass from Novotel Twin Waters Resort, Ladies Oaks Day tickets from Hot91 and a family pass to the Treetop Challenge, as well as council-donated tickets to the Sunnykids Mayoral Ball and the STEPS Winter Ball.

Cr Connolly was also given tickets from Sunshine Coast Stadium to three Sunshine Coast Falcons games and the Rabbitohs v Warriors NRL game.

Crs Christian Dickson and Ted Hungerford had no gifts recorded so far in 2019.

The Sunshine Coast Council, elected on March 19, gathered at the Caloundra chamber.
The Sunshine Coast Council, elected on March 19, gathered at the Caloundra chamber.


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