Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Last Post (for a while) on Mps Expense Claims.

In the post dated 4 Feb which I headed "Fiddling the Expenses" which I have now changed to "Fiddling the Expenses?" I mentioned that some of the amounts were almost unbelievable. Then I mentioned three of those amounts, one being our very own local MP, Mr Adrian Sanders. I pointed out that he had been asked to pay back a little over £690. In the context of the post it could possibly have looked like I was suggesting that there could have been wrong doing on the part of Mr Sanders, though that wasn't my intention. He hadn't switched his second home to get the government to pay his personal mortgage or claimed £500 for a laptop computer bag. He had merely claimed for rent on his flat in London, which he is entitled to. Then 4 years ago Parliament had been dissolved. This period of 21 days after Parliament has been dissolved MPs can not apparently claim rent for London flats but no one told the MPs and until Sir Thomas Legg mentioned it a couple of months ago Mr Sanders had no idea he had inadvertently over claimed. So the overpayment was to do with mistakes made by the admin department that are supposed to control MPs expense claims. Which was in fact the purpose of the post. In all this sorry mess no one appears to be commenting on that department's shortcomings. The changes in the rules that have been brought in plus the slowness of the admin department are in fact making many MPs look like guilty men and women when they aren't. As Mr Sanders says in a comment on a recent post an independent audit of expenses should be carried out every year.

Mr Sanders, as soon as he was informed of the fact that he had received too much repaid the total amount immediately.

So far, while living in Torbay I have voted for the same person in two general elections. I do not expect to change this habit in the next general election.


Adrian Sanders MP said...

Thanks Dave. The Fees Office has not escaped censure. It is being disbanded and replaced by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA), but, and here's the rub, at a cost of £6 million. There is a saving somewhere, but likely to be less than £2 million.

BTW, your site is what blogging should be about - fair comment and observation that's both interesting, thoughful and sometimes amusing. Adrian

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bouncertqy said...

In my view MP's expenses should not have been put in the"Press" Domain" but for years it has been known that there were faults in the system.

I have been advised over many years that the system was about to explode"!

Guy Fawkes rides again!

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