Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Browns Politicians In Need Appeal

Nice to see such big improvements from Brown on body language, I wasn't worried at all by the slight rocking motion nor the smiling, it really does wonders for perception.

His proposal of addressing MP's expenses does surprisingly have some potentially good points, the full statement can be read on the BBC:
  • No second home allowance or claims for food, furniture and fittings, fuel, mortgage interest, rent or council tax.
  • Flat rate expense payment based on attendance.
  • No second home allowance for those that can commute or live in grace and favour homes.
  • MPs' Staff being employed directly by the House of Commons.
  • Full receipts for claims including under £25.
  • Transparency of MPs' Second Incomes.
It does pose the question though of what's the catch? The main catch is they haven't waited for the Committee on Standards in Public Life to report back, which could move the goal posts. Whether these points do have value though, hinge around what the flat rate payment will be, how many days are included, what the small print is and who will over see these "improvements".

The most important aspect to this reform, is not having expenses made to be an extension of a salary. Both in pocketing money and purchasing things that should be brought by MPs themselves. Otherwise it defeats the point to begin with.

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