NBNCo's Kaiser paid $450,000

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NBNCo's Kaiser paid $450,000

Opposition cries foul.

NBNCo's government relations and external affairs principal, Mike Kaiser, will be paid $450,000 per year, according to a document tabled in Parliament yesterday.

The current chief of staff to Labor Queensland Premier Anna Bligh was appointed to the national broadband company last week.

The move prompted Opposition Communications Minister Nick Minchin to suggest NBNCo was being used as a vehicle to "reward Labor mates at the expense of taxpayers".

Minchin had put forward a Senate motion seeking a reason for Kaiser's appoinment and salary.

Senator Joe Ludwig - acting on behalf of absent Communications Minister Stephen Conroy - tabled a document [PDF] in the Senate yesterday.

It said Kaiser's appointment was "an independent decision taken by NBNCo, not by the Government."

The Government said it was aware of Kaiser's appointment prior to the news being made public.

"The Government is confident all these communications [between NBNCo and the Government] were entirely proper and appropriate," the document said.

The document also revealed Kaiser's salary, which the Government said had been reviewed by the Chair of People and Performance Committee.

"NBNCo advise that the salary is consistent with equivalent jobs in other companies," the document said.

"The salary arrangements were not discussed with any members of the Government at any time."

In response, Minchin claimed that paying someone $450,000 "for a company that generated no revenue was absolutely outrageous".

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