New £600,000 independent audit body for MPs’ expenses

May 10, 2009 at 7:39 pm Leave a comment

A new body will be created to oversee the expenses claims of MPs, it has been reported.

At present the Fees Office is responsible for policing expenses.

This weekend The Daily Telegraph has reported on the expenses claims of many MPs and Cabinet ministers, including the Prime Minister.

Public anger about the expenses regime in the Commons led a member of the Members Estimate Committee to reveal that it will meet tomorrow and plans to establish a new audit body.

The committee considers matters relating to MPs’ pay and allowances on behalf of the House and has the same membership as the House of Commons Commission.

Sir Stuart Bell told the BBC:

“We will… create a new body, a different body that will be separate.

“I would hope that once this body is created and is up and running it will then be hived off to the private sector to another firm, so there is an entire arm’s length between members of Parliament and those who are dispersing amounts under allowances.”

The Members Estimates Committee comprises Sir Stuart, Mr Speaker, Leader of the House Harriet Harman and her Conservative shadow Alan Duncan, Lib Dem MP Nick Harvey and Tory MP and former Chief Whip David Maclean.

The new audit body, which will cost an estimated £600,000 a year to run. A proposal will be put to the Commons for a vote as early as tomorrow.

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Entry filed under: Committees, Commons. Tags: , , , , , , , , , .

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