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Council to pay $7500 for mayor's accommodation on Paris fact-finding trip

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Sunshine Coast Council will fund $7500 for mayor Rosanna Natoli’s accommodation when she travels to the Paris Olympics in July, following confusion over who would pay for it.

It was initially understood Cr Natoli’s accommodation, on-ground transport, meals and event attendance would be funded by the Olympic Family Program, while she would pay for her own flights and council would pay for incidental travel costs up to $1000.

But following updated travel information from the International Olympic Committee and the Olympic Games Organising Committee, the council will now pay for the mayor’s accommodation.

Council CEO Emma Thomas said the decision to pay for Cr Natoli’s accommodation was a business decision that would benefit the Sunshine Coast community.

“Council was originally advised that the mayor’s accommodation in Paris would be funded as part of the Olympic Family Program,” Ms Thomas said.

“We were made aware that this is not the case following the April 24 Ordinary Meeting, at which it was voted unanimously that mayor Natoli should participate in the program.”

Cr Natoli said her presence in Paris remained critical in securing a positive Games legacy for the region.

“Am I greatly disappointed that the accommodations cost will not be covered as we originally thought? Yes, absolutely,” she said.

“Having discussed with my councillor colleagues and weighing everything up, we all agreed this opportunity is too important to forgo and that the value of my participation in the program will significantly outweigh the cost of my accommodation.

“The lessons I will learn and the insights I will gain into transport requirements, community impact, the Cultural Olympiad and local business opportunities will be instrumental as we prepare to co-host what is arguably the largest global event.

“I remain fiercely committed to maximising the opportunity to be on the ground at Paris 24 and using my learnings to guide our Games preparations in the coming years.”

The Mayor will be travelling from July 25 to August 2 alongside other Olympic and Paralympic Games Brisbane 2032 Delivery Partners, including representatives from City of Gold Coast and Brisbane City councils.

In 2032, the Sunshine Coast is proposed to host nine Olympic and Paralympic events across four locations.

Do you have an opinion to share? Submit a Letter to the Editor at Sunshine Coast News via news@sunshinecoastnews.com.auYou must include your name and suburb.

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