This Story About Australia's Feral Cats Eating KFC Only Gets Weirder

Australia has a kitty problem, and it isn't "the cat scratched up the couch." It's that feral cats roam 99.8 per cent of the country — cats cover more Australian land than internet access does. To alleviate the problem, officials from Parks Victoria are, uh, feeding the cats KFC. But also maybe embezzling public money.

Image: AP

The Guardian reports:

On Monday Victoria's environment minister, Lily D'Ambrosio, announced an external auditor would undertake an independent review of Parks Victoria's credit card transactions over the past four years.

The investigation was prompted by a large number of credit card transactions and credit cards available to Parks Victoria staff, the minister said.

Parks Victoria credit card statements requested by the opposition under freedom of information laws have since revealed that $260 was spent by staff across seven visits to the same KFC store over a four-month period.

A nameless source also told the The Guardian that "KFC is widely known to be the most effective bait for luring feral cats," which is honestly incredible. Like, possibly the most incredible quote ever reported by the news media.

Anyway, this would normally be fine — Victorian scientist Alan Robley from the Arthur Rylah Institute For Environmental Research in Victoria told The Guardian that fried chicken made a good lure thanks to its "scent and prolonged freshness". But the audit found that parks employees also spent hundreds of dollars on jewellery, mountain bikes and other things probably not used for park upkeep, as well as $5000 at home entertainment store JB Hi-Fi. The total credit card bill came to $2.2 million dollars.

It is awesome that feral cats like KFC. It is not awesome that Australian parks might be using taxpayer money to buy themselves mountain bikes.

[The Guardian]

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    Really? You're running this beat up story as well? It's perfectly normal to have expensed put on credit cards. It's perfectly normal to have expenses from a wide variety of places. We have NO idea what those expenses were, as we're in no position to judge if they were proper business expenses. Stop writing bullshit click baity articles.

      ok, i'll bite.

      Please tell me which government department requires the purchase of jewellery?
      The food, the bikes, the AV stuff - yeah, i can understand because we also do some creative justifications to get equipment to get the job done.

      One card purchases a range of things - but some things are not justifiable.

      *written on a government computer during government hours while taking a government salary.

        Maybe it was a watch for someone who had worked there for 20/30/40 years? Maybe it was a service performed by a jeweler instead, calibration of mechanical equipment?

        Without actually producing a receipt for the goods you have no way to tell what was purchased. Which is very handy for the article, notice they only got a FOI for the statements, not the receipts. Makes for a much better read when you can speculate on what the purchases were, instead of having facts.

        Ok, I'll bite.
        In many, or maybe all, government departments it is POLICY that all purchases up to $5000 be made on credit card. This is because it is assessed as cheaper and more accountable. Therefore it would be expected and normal that a LOT of purchases would be made on credit cards.
        JB sells AV gear which would be an obviously appropriate purchase for many government departments. JB also sells many other items that may be used by government departments. Computer, microwave, camera are a few that come to mind without much thought.
        Mountain bikes seem pretty obvious for Parks and Wildlife.
        Jewellery may well be something from a jewellery store rather than a diamond ring. Ultrasonic cleaning an item for example.
        Credit cards are sometimes also required to be used for all travel expenses. Therefore all meals purchased when travelling, as well as accomodation, taxis, etc must be put on credit card. KFC, McDonalds would be common.
        Everything purchased on a government credit card is itemised and must be accounted for (unless you are a minister of course).
        There are undoubtably a few cases of fraud. They are not common. The article in the Guardian does not show anything that may not be normal process and is nonsense and the repost here is pretty crap jounalism.
        Some of the outrage in the comments seems unconcerned with facts.

    i came here to read about twist on using cats to improve Internet coverage or KFC mutant cats and I got some stupid copy/paste article about credit card abuse?.... wtf

    I thought KFC was made from feral cats?

    Kentucky Feral Cat/Kentucky Fried Cat?

    The KFC works. And hot and spicey KFC is toxic to cats so if you want a free pet cat go Original Recipe.

    As to the other stuff...legitimate equipment: av stuff from jbhifi includes surveilance cameras and a big screen to watch it on. A Mountain Bike to ride in the bush parks. The jewelery covers wrist watches. So all legitimate equipment purchases. If that found its way to an individuals home be lynchin time.

    How do we know that Jewellery and expensive stereo systems aren't good for attracting feral cats?

    I know my cat will come only when lured with the best 4K HDR TVs money can buy.

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