Donation declarations still flowing for Ipswich councillors

SINCE the polls closed for the mayoral by-election the key candidates have declared almost $14,000 in donations.

The largest amounts declared post-election come from councillor Paul Tully, who didn't reveal his biggest campaign contributor until election day, and mayor-elect Cr Andrew Antoniolli.

The day Ipswich voters went to the polls, campaign donations to Cr Tully worth more than $18,000 from Gold Coast based lobbyist Graham Staerk appeared on the Electoral Commission Queensland website.

Since then, Cr Tully has declared a further $6,578.50 from Mr Staerk and Falvey Investments Pty Ltd.

Before the election Michael Favley was upfront about his support for Cr Tully in relation to other donations declared during the campaign.

The post-election declarations to Cr Tully include $3707.50 from Graham Staerk and $2871 from Falvey Investments Pty Ltd.

The QT has been unable to contact Mr Staerk.

But Mr Staerk told the Brisbane Times he paid for Cr Tully's billboards after the heavyweight contender "had trouble paying for billboards, paying for T-Shirts".

Mr Staerk said he made the donations personally, but had no business interests in Ipswich.

For Cr Antoniolli, $7350 has been declared post-election with the largest donation of $5,500 coming from Ace Material Handling Pty Ltd.

According to its website, Ace Material Handling has offices in Queensland, New South Wales and The Northern Territory.

The business offers a diverse range of services including crane operation, manufacture and maintenance, and aircraft docking stations and hydraulic systems.

Ace Material Handling was contacted for comment.

Under new disclosure rules, donations must be declared within seven days.

The Electoral Commission Queensland said it continued to monitor donations closely.

"ECQ is currently considering the disclosures made for the Ipswich City Council mayoral by-election," a spokesperson said.

So far, Cr Tully has declared $36,635.42 worth donations, excluding what appears to be a double up on declarations from Graham Staerk.

Cr Antoniolli has declared $42,350, excluding what appeared to be a double up on a declaration from JJ Investments Trust.

Declared donations to key candidates

  • Cr Paul Tully: $36,635.42
  • Cr Andrew Antoniolli: $42,350

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