A New Approach to MP Expenses

#1
An MP has to paid to do his job and his expenses to do that job.

Take the case of an MP in the North of Scotland, it only seems fair that he should be expected to travel from his home constituency to Westminster every week at our expense.

I would also expect that it would be sensible for that MP to have a small flat in London to stay overnight during the week before bashing back up North to his family home and then doing the stuff he is required to do in his constituency.

The obvious answer is that every penny he claims from us, his employers, is listed on a website, so that we can see what we are paying for.

Not listed a year after the event but each week, as the claims go in.

We will see what claims are genuine i.e. "Attended reception for XYZ Group - got too pissed to drive home - stayed in hotel." All perfectly understandable.

Just make it public and the public will agree that the claims are to be paid.
 
#2
Even simpler, the MP chooses a residence (within a budget) which is then purchased and equipped by Parliament. When the MP leaves office the property and its contents remain the property of Parliament and either get reused or sold.
 
#3
CQMS said:
Even simpler, the MP chooses a residence (within a budget) which is then purchased and equipped by Parliament. When the MP leaves office the property and its contents remain the property of Parliament and either get reused or sold.
Good idea.

The London base, which he needs to do his job, is provided and any "profit" that comes from it is ours; the people that paid for it.
OR it is made available to the person who gained his seat in the election.

Your proposal makes sense.
 
#5
I've been saying the above (re Commons hotel thing) for years. Why can;t they build a fully furnished, at least 4* hotel or decent apartment block somewhere central for them to reside. Run by parliament. It'd cost less then 25k accommodation (PLUS LONDON SECOND HOME) per year. If I were an MP, so long as my room and facilities were big enough, I had a decent study area and business class lobby/dining facilities, i'd be fine. I don't need a second home.

In my view, MPs should be paid about 100k, at least, to reflect their relative importance (they are the law makers of the land), and everything else, all the trimmings, stationary allowances, travel, etc should be scrapped.

I'm ambivalent and open minded for the constituency offices, which cost a lot of money.

Communications allowances, currently at 10k and used by virtually all (brought in by Labour so they could propagate their MPs to their constituents) wants scrapping too. State funded party literature that.
 
#6
TheKing said:
Communications allowances, currently at 10k and used by virtually all (brought in by Labour so they could propagate their MPs to their constituents) wants scrapping too. State funded party literature that.
The Communications Allowance - a splendid idea that gives the sitting labour MP a GBP10K worth of propaganda ( sorry - comunication with his constituents).

Definitely the first thing to be scrapped.
 
#7
smallbore said:
An MP has to paid to do his job and his expenses to do that job.

Take the case of an MP in the North of Scotland, it only seems fair that he should be expected to travel from his home constituency to Westminster every week at our expense.
Why do we have Scottish MP's in Westminster, I am sure there are no English in the Scottish Parliment?

Same for Welsh and Northern Irish MP's

Stilts
 
#8
I note that The Green Book is being quietly re-written to ease some of the ''rules/guidelines'' for MPs expenses.
I note also,some MP saying on TV today,that MPs expenses should be treated as an Official Secret as information from their chits might be usefull to terrorists.What is he hiding/smoking? His name is Bell(Labour)
 
#9
muhandis89 said:
I note that The Green Book is being quietly re-written to ease some of the ''rules/guidelines'' for MPs expenses.
I note also,some MP saying on TV today,that MPs expenses should be treated as an Official Secret as information from their chits might be usefull to terrorists.What is he hiding/smoking? His name is Bell(Labour)
Yes, written in the style so beloved by the master wordsmith containing just the right balance between positivism and ambiguity to provide for the widest possible interpretation.
 
#10
Stationary allowance?

They can demand from Banner (or whoever has the account at themoment) from the standard catalogue.

An RAO can be seconded to arbitrarily cut items from the order, on the grounds that they don't think the dept demanding the items need.....

Like the 50 A4 folders to replace the A4 folders that were literally falling apart after what looked like 20 years service minimum in the TM Troop, Tech Library.
 
#11
Stationary allowances are shy of 4k. This involves pens, paper, your employees christmas pens. This doesn't even include IT equipment.

MPs are pretty important people, let there be no doubt, they ARE underpaid, 63k is nothing today, but this wants balancing out. Raise their pay, cut their perks.
 
#12
TheKing said:
In my view, MPs should be paid about 100k, at least, to reflect their relative importance (they are the law makers of the land), and everything else, all the trimmings, stationary allowances, travel, etc should be scrapped.quote]

So lawyers who produce no added value are relatively important?

Some time back on here I did some comparative valuations of the original MPs salary - the one which opened politics to other than the landed gentry and professional classes - a retrograde step IMHO but that's progress for you. Allowing for all the different bases for calculating a 1911 pound's value today, the average salary in "now" terms would be £40000. Which personally seems perfectly fair as a screw for these parasitic sods.

Does anybody think that an MP deserves more? Surely they are sacrificing their personal careers for public welfare and therefore have no thought of compensation. their pension arrangements alone ought to offset any big salary demands? The c0cks...
 
#13
STILTS said:
Why do we have Scottish MP's in Westminster, I am sure there are no English in the Scottish Parliment?
Sorry..."Yet the media, both in England and in Scotland, have largely ignored the fact that around one in nine Members of the Scottish Parliament was born in England." (Murray Watson; History Today, Vol. 55, June 2005)

Interestingly the SNP has the highest number of English-born MSPs of all the Scottish parties...
 
#14
Cuddles said:
TheKing said:
In my view, MPs should be paid about 100k, at least, to reflect their relative importance (they are the law makers of the land), and everything else, all the trimmings, stationary allowances, travel, etc should be scrapped.quote]

So lawyers who produce no added value are relatively important?

Some time back on here I did some comparative valuations of the original MPs salary - the one which opened politics to other than the landed gentry and professional classes - a retrograde step IMHO but that's progress for you. Allowing for all the different bases for calculating a 1911 pound's value today, the average salary in "now" terms would be £40000. Which personally seems perfectly fair as a screw for these parasitic sods.

Does anybody think that an MP deserves more? Surely they are sacrificing their personal careers for public welfare and therefore have no thought of compensation. their pension arrangements alone ought to offset any big salary demands? The c0cks...
Not to discredit your academic toiling, but I think it's impossible to work out what the worth of an MP. What I do think, is that the office of MP is one of great privilege and is probably somewhat difficult, strenuous and takes its toll on normal family life. They perform CEO-like daily tasks, they do lots of paper work, managing and they, more importantly, scrutinise the democratic systems in this country and make vital decisions that affect every citizen, sometimes beyond, in the land.

63K (barring the expenses, claims, etc) is probably the impetus to going overboard on claims and is the root of the problem.

Pay them properly, tighten the rules on ludicrous expenses, you'll see a cut in sleaze and move us back to the top amongst the league of non corruption economies.
 
#15
TheKing said:
Stationary allowances are shy of 4k. This involves pens, paper, your employees christmas pens. This doesn't even include IT equipment.

MPs are pretty important people, let there be no doubt, they ARE underpaid, 63k is nothing today, but this wants balancing out. Raise their pay, cut their perks.
I disagree. 63K/year is more than enough to do the job. Right now, they have 60k + expenses = 60k (or perhaps 40k after tax) disposable income which is more than the vast majority of people in the country can hope for.

Bear in mind they have a gold plated non-contributory pension as well. And, let's not forget large numbers of these people hire their wives/husbands so some of the expenses go straight back into their households.

It is a VERY cushy position to be in.

Lastly. this is a job that, if the MP is so minded, could be part time. No one says MPs have to attend parliament.
 
#16
TheKing said:
Cuddles said:
TheKing said:
In my view, MPs should be paid about 100k, at least, to reflect their relative importance (they are the law makers of the land), and everything else, all the trimmings, stationary allowances, travel, etc should be scrapped.quote]

So lawyers who produce no added value are relatively important?

Some time back on here I did some comparative valuations of the original MPs salary - the one which opened politics to other than the landed gentry and professional classes - a retrograde step IMHO but that's progress for you. Allowing for all the different bases for calculating a 1911 pound's value today, the average salary in "now" terms would be £40000. Which personally seems perfectly fair as a screw for these parasitic sods.

Does anybody think that an MP deserves more? Surely they are sacrificing their personal careers for public welfare and therefore have no thought of compensation. their pension arrangements alone ought to offset any big salary demands? The c0cks...
Not to discredit your academic toiling, but I think it's impossible to work out what the worth of an MP. What I do think, is that the office of MP is one of great privilege and is probably somewhat difficult, strenuous and takes its toll on normal family life. They perform CEO-like daily tasks, they do lots of paper work, managing and they, more importantly, scrutinise the democratic systems in this country and make vital decisions that affect every citizen, sometimes beyond, in the land.

63K (barring the expenses, claims, etc) is probably the impetus to going overboard on claims and is the root of the problem.
Pay them properly, tighten the rules on ludicrous expenses, you'll see a cut in sleaze and move us back to the top amongst the league of non corruption economies.
If it is impossible to work out the worth of an MP - how can you so assuredly announce that £63k is too little for their efforts. Pay them 'properly' - for what? They are already on an incredible wage when compared to the majority of society ... and fulfil a Public Sector position - serving the public.

Soldiers, nurses, teachers, bin men ... these deserve more money - Politicians need to work harder to justify their pay and appease the Public
 
#17
EdwardCoke said:
Lastly. this is a job that, if the MP is so minded, could be part time. No one says MPs have to attend parliament.
I'm sorry, if I'm sending someone to represent me in Parliament, I want them working full time. I'd like them to attend all (or at least most) debates- like the one on Defence recently that had less than two dozen Members attending!
 
#18
onfire said:
If it is impossible to work out the worth of an MP - how can you so assuredly announce that £63k is too little for their efforts. Pay them 'properly' - for what? They are already on an incredible wage when compared to the majority of society ... and fulfil a Public Sector position - serving the public.

Soldiers, nurses, teachers, bin men ... these deserve more money - Politicians need to work harder to justify their pay and appease the Public
As I pointed out in another post, my MP was a junior manager before entering Parliament. By now he'd have been on about £40k. Instead, as an MP, he's on over £200k, most of it tax free. That's about treble what he'd be getting if he was a consultant brain surgeon in the NHS. All he does for that is turn up and vote the way the party whips tell him to vote. He doesn't need to think about anything or contemplate changes to the law - not if he wants any sort of career progression within his party.

Nobody could argue that the salary he awards himself is reasonable.

At the other extreme, we see people like John Prescott and Alan Johnson. Both left school at 14. Not an O-level between them. By his own admission, Prescott can't read very well. Both were handed multi billion pound budgets to manage along with cabinet minister posts.

Running an organisation half the size of the NHS would command a salary of millions in the private sector. We pay peanuts so we get postman pat.
 
#19
Also, which no-one has mentioned yet, is all the extra curricular work that the Parliamentarians do. Think of all the directorships, Non-exec directors, Consultants, advisor.

Hell, even the union’s dosh out thousands a year to 'sponsor' Liarbour big-wigs.

There is a moratorium on Civil Service mandarins jumping into nice comfy jobs straight after retiring for the said department that oversaw their new employers. MOD into BAE system, Thales etc; Treasury Officials, to the major banks, PWC, Ernst & Young etc. So why not the MP's?

I still can't believe that we have a 'democracy' where those elected by the people also draw money from companies that they could have possible influence over in decision making. Forget lobbying buy a few MP's.

Cut all ties with companies and possible conflicts of interest. But make it financially comparable.
Register of Members Interests Read some of these, it's shocking really.

And remember, before I get the "it's only a four year tenure" speech, they went for the job, we didn't force them. I didn't leave my last job to start where I am on the proviso that I should have some retainer somewhere in case it doesn't work out. MP's are judged by constituents on popularity, ability and notable achievements; if you're crap, you're out.
.
 
#20
TheKing said:
Not to discredit your academic toiling
You are very kind but it was twenty minutes with t'interweb and a calculator, hand-held Mk 1...

I tend to discredit my academic standing daily, however kindly I am thought of in defence economics circles, so it is a kind thought!
 

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