Don't miss a story sign up to Weston Mercury's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

MPs claim £370k in expenses

PUBLISHED: 13:05 14 September 2012

MP Tessa Munt

MP Tessa Munt

Archant

THE region’s three MPs have claimed more than £370,000 of taxpayer’s money in expenses this year – with one taking back more money than the Prime Minister.

John Penrose, Liam Fox and Tessa Munt scooped a total of £374,933.53 between them, with only Mr Penrose filing a smaller claim than last year.

Ms Munt, who is MP for areas including Cheddar and Burnham, filed claims worth £164,862.07 in the 2011-12 financial year - £45,000 more than PM David Cameron.

The majority of the money claimed by Ms Munt was spent on running her constituency office but more than £30,000 went on living costs including rent and a claim for a TV licence for her London flat.

North Somerset MP Dr Fox claimed more than £110,000 in expenses for the second year running on top of his salary. His claims included two petrol expenses worth 67p and 89p for visits within his constituency.

Dr Fox, who is MP for Cleeve and other towns and villages in the north of the district, claimed more money this year than he did in 2010-11, despite his resignation from frontline politics last October.

He quit his role as defence Secretary amid criticisms over compromising security by allowing friend Adam Werrity to join him on political business without being vetted.

Weston MP John Penrose claimed the least of the three politicians despite being the only one with a ministerial role.

The former tourism and heritage minister – who lost the position last week – filed £95,491.38 in expenses, which is £10,000 less than last year.

MPs are entitled to an allowance to cover various expenses including travel and accommodation costs incurred by their regular commutes to Westminster for parliamentary business.

But the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority was created in 2009 following widespread abuse of the expenses system – which is ultimately funded by the taxpayer.

None of the trio are under investigation for any expenses claims made this year.

Mr Penrose said: “Most people were completely horrified by the expenses scandal, but at least it meant the system got a much-needed and thorough spring clean.

“The new system is much more transparent, and independent from MPs themselves too. ‘Sunlight is the best disinfectant’, as the saying goes.”

Ms Munt was asked for comment but failed to respond before the Mercury went to press.

7 comments

  • I frequently write to John Penrose, and always get a prompt and well considered response whatever the issue. An MP needs staff and that costs money. These costs seem entirely reasonable.

    Report this comment

    Jim

    Friday, September 14, 2012

  • Only way to stop the "hidden" expense debate is to give MPs one salary and insist on no other job...like the rest of us. Tks P

    Report this comment

    Munro

    Friday, September 14, 2012

  • There's a lot of services could be provided for 370k...

    Report this comment

    MarkBradshaw

    Friday, September 14, 2012

  • has anyone else noticed how the story about nsc needing to save money has disapeared .....well here the answer to that one STOP paying these wasters huge expenses let then live like the rest of us no one needs £164 000 to live lets see a breakdown on all the expenses

    Report this comment

    gruf69

    Friday, September 14, 2012

  • In this so-called digital age there is no need for MPs having 2nd homes or even travelling to London - videoconferencing works. If MPs need staff how about getting people in with MP clout - not just paper pushers. The traditional MP ways of working need revamped and until MPs can vote in the way their constituents want and not by the party whip..so much the better. Tks P.

    Report this comment

    Munro

    Saturday, September 15, 2012

  • What on earth can you spend that sort of money on in one year something needs to be done to stop this happening in the future it's criminal

    Report this comment

    Pritch

    Friday, September 14, 2012

  • they have to pay their staff (Partners, children etc) plus they have to have a second mortgage on a pad in London or in their own area depending on how they play the system. then they have to pay for first class rail to get them to parliment. It all adds up... It's a hard life.

    Report this comment

    neo

    Friday, September 14, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Other News Stories

20:01

Weston-super-Mare’s Labour Party hit the streets to protest against the Government’s latest budget, saying people ‘deserve better’ than an ‘underfunded’ NHS.

Read more
19:01

Weston Town Council decided who will be the town’s mayor and deputy mayor for the next year at its meeting on Monday.

Read more
17:00

Weston’s Cancer Research UK committee held its annual knit-in at the town’s football club, with more than 65 keen knitters taking part.

Read more
16:00

A curry night has raised £855 for an animal charity.

Read more
15:00

A Weston hotel worker had his head shaved in aid of one of the town’s most popular charities.

Read more
14:00

A Somerset care home has earned praise from the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Read more
13:00

Students from a North Somerset school reinvented a classic story this week for a quirky performance.

Read more
12:00

A sea cadet unit is on the lookout for new members to join its ranks.

Read more
11:00

Supporters of a Weston-super-Mare charity were given a reason to celebrate this week when the winner of a prize worth £500 was chosen.

Read more

The NSPCC has called on parents to check the age limits on social media, with a recent survey revealing 16 per cent of adults in the South West were unaware a restriction existed.

Read more

Most Read News

Read Online

Image
Read the Weston Worle and Somerset Mercury e-edition E-edition

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 7°C

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
Send Your Letters
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

Somerset's trusted business finder