As a taxpayer I was as appalled as anyone else at the blatant misuse of public money by some MPs in previous Parliaments and I am dismayed that this behaviour has so undermined trust in politics.
However, we now have a new approach to politics and there is greater responsibility and transparency. When I was elected in 2010 I made some simple pledges to the people of the Moorlands that I will adhere to as your MP. This is my contract between you the voter and me your representative. I pledge that I will:
- be completely open and transparent about my expenses, publishing receipts online as the claim is submitted
- only claim for expenses directly linked to my work as an MP
- not use taxpayers' money to promote party political activities and vote to abolish the communications allowance at the first opportunity
- run a constituency office employing appropriate staff whose duties are to support me in working to represent my constituents
- keep my main home in the Moorlands where I pay full council tax and where I am registered on the electoral role.
You can read my Declarations of Interests on the Parliament website: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm/cmregmem/contents1213.htm
The documents attached below provide information on my recent expenses claims.
A quick note about the system of expenses now that IPSA publish all claims; the system put together by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) is time consuming and complex and a considerable amount of public money is spent on managing it both on IPSA itself and on MP's time and their staffs' time. Because IPSA publish all MPs expenses I cannot justify any more of my office's time in duplicating that action when my team can use the time to support me in helping my constituents. You can find details of my claims on the IPSA website. http://www.parliamentary-standards.org.uk/.