An Adelaide mayor got more than she bargained for when the task of baking a cake for her son’s birthday between appointments caused a political scandal.
Mitcham Mayor Heather Holmes-Ross posted her efforts on her professional Facebook page last month, calling it “work/life balance in action.”
“I made the dessert in the council kitchen between appointments,” she wrote on November 3.
“The smell of melting chocolate permeated through the building making it seem very homely.
“I’m not sure that a mayor has baked in the kitchen before. Happy birthday son.”
While many followers praised the post, Ms Holmes-Ross came under fire for using the council kitchen, as council regulations state that officials cannot use council facilities for their own benefit.
A Mitcham Council spokeswoman told the ABC that there would be an investigation following a complaint.
However, Ms Holmes-Ross defended her actions in another Facebook post, suggesting the complaint was motivated by sexism.
“I have no words,” she wrote in the post along with a screenshot of the story headline.
“If a male Mayor had managed to bake a cake for his son during a busy day serving his community at council, he’d be a superhero.”
Ms Holmes-Ross received an outpouring of support from followers on the post.
“Your outstanding characteristics are your genuineness, down to earth nature, hard work, passion and commitment – of course that adds up to efficiently fulfilling your role as a mother and a Mayor at the same time,” wrote one supporter.
“We love you keep up the good work please!”
“Can not believe there is a ‘Bakegate’ dilemma at Mitcham Council,” another wrote.
In response to one comment, Ms Holmes-Ross suggested there might have been more sinister motives at play in the scandal, saying “perhaps they were fed the story by someone who could benefit from it?
“Or maybe not…”