Education Minister Simon Birmingham ignored the advice of his hand-picked advisory group on apprenticeships to award almost $2 million to a trades training school connected to former senator Bob Day.
But the Auditor-General has found he broke no rules in doing so because federal ministers can at times choose not to use competitive tendering for public grants.
Senator Birmingham welcomed the finding on Thursday, saying it must be a "giant disappointment to Labor", which pursued him and Mr Day as the collapse of his building business and a challenge to his election ended the political career of the Family First senator.
The Audit Office began an investigation after Fairfax Media revealed in November last year that North East Vocational College in suburban Adelaide had been handed $1.84 million by the government to trial Mr Day's pet project, "student builders".
Day of course was a fraud and a failure and a re-engineered Liberal. Family First is a front for far right Liberals. This was a shonky deal to win his vote in the Senate. If Birmingham derives some pleasure from these findings then he is deluded and just as compromised as all his dubious pals like Abbott, Brandis and Dutton.
Labors budget reply spelt out how Labor will restore real Hondki reforms if elected.
Lovely morning at work today.
This is why education is underfunded in this country.
Famous Five Danger graph and treasure chest model.