Why are we still waiting for details on how MPs spent their Communications Allowance?

The Communications Allowance is a fund for each MP of £10,000 a year of taxpayers money to spend on ensuring their re-election communicating with their constituents. That is a pretty massive sum. At current prices as a sitting MP I could have a full colour A3 delivered to every house in a constituency four times a year. By anyone’s standards its a massive boost to local campaigning

So I’m awaiting details as to how MPs have spent this windfall with interest. And it will be declared by the Parliamentary authorities.

Eventually at least.

According to www.parliament.uk, “Costs will be reported in the autumn of 2008.” It’s well after that date now, and when asking about this information yesterday the Parliamentary authorities told me that it is still being prepared and no date is set for its publication

So why the wait? The payments run on a financial year and the latest claim for each year is two months after the end of the financial year. The authorities should have made all the payments for the last financial year by mid-June 2008 at the latest. The amount paid to each MP must be monitored so that they can be told how much is left for election campaigning further communications – so it isn’t that difficult a set of figures to pull together.

And after all the House authorities have now had longer to prepare this information than the Government gives citizens to prepare their tax returns!

Read more by or more about or .
This entry was posted in News.
Advert

5 Comments

  • Are you thinking of the same thing Alix? I wasn’t aware any MP had voluntarily published their Comms Allowance returns (AIUI Nick published his housing etc expenses voluntarily).

    In fairness given that there was an undertaking to publish them in Autumn 2008 it was reasonable from them not to

  • I really do think that there’s a strong case for Nick to bring up this whole issue of MPs’ expenses etc up at PMQs today. Not least, I think that the general public perception of ‘they’re all the same, they’re all at it’ needs to be challenged. I also think that it’s becoming increasingly clear that the rules, as currently constituted are not sufficient.

    As a more general sidebar, how about a weekly open thread on Wednesday mornings on LDV asking ‘What should Nick ask the PM at PMQs today?’ You’d get the benefit of a small community of different ideas and it may just throw up the odd zinger every so often. Just as a bit of fun really.

  • I apologise – Nick has published his Comms Allowance figures (on the link Anders sets out above).

    However the publication of the Communications Allowance figures shouldn’t be a particularly tricky job as the payments should all have been made by mid-June.

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

*
*
Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?

Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJonathan Maltz 13th Nov - 6:18am
    Unless we are willing to stand down in around 70-80 Labour held seats where the Labour candidate is strongly pro remain, and Labour is willing...
  • User AvatarPete Tanner 13th Nov - 4:35am
    A big well done and many thanks to Nick Harvey from his old constituency in North Devon. We have fond memory’s of Nick as a...
  • User AvatarJoseph Bourke 13th Nov - 12:14am
    Correction. Shoud say above - As a rule of thumb projects need to be able to generate a minimum of £1.50 in the form of...
  • User AvatarJoseph Bourke 13th Nov - 12:07am
    Arnold Kiel gets to the crux of the matter when he writes "Public investment works if it triggers the deployment of private capital, but not...
  • User AvatarMartin 12th Nov - 11:52pm
    I see that Peter Martin's economics requires an autocratic and dictatorial, isolated system.
  • User AvatarKatharine Pindar 12th Nov - 10:43pm
    The £50m 'Remain Bonus' (splendid notion!) will need some rather careful figuring out of how it can be spent on 'public services and tackling inequality'....