Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The greed and corruption continues


Nick Clegg, the Liberal Democrat leader who has championed the reform of MPs’ expenses, claimed the maximum allowed under his parliamentary second home allowance.
As well as submitting regular claims for food, gardening, furniture and decorating at his constituency home in Sheffield Hallam, Mr Clegg put in his telephone costs, including several international calls to Colombia, Vietnam, and Spain.

Records seen by The Daily Telegraph show that Mr Clegg regularly claimed at or just below the maximum possible under the Additional Costs Allowance, which may be used by MPs to run a second home.
Last year, he had his expenses docked after exceeding the £23,083 maximum by more than £100. His office manager wrote to the Commons fees office: “This month’s claim takes Nick over the allowance total (just).”

The disclosure came as Mr Clegg made a series of high profile media appearances criticising the allowances system.

“People will just simply despair that all politicians look either ridiculous at best or corrupt at worst,” he said. Mr Clegg has also frequently made play of the issue of MPs’ expenses during regular clashes with Gordon Brown.

Last month, he stormed out of a meeting with the Prime Minister in protest at their inability to agree a system.

Within six months of being elected to Parliament in 2005, Mr Clegg bought a house in his constituency and began charging monthly interest repayments of £1,018 on the £279,000 mortgage on his expenses.

He also submitted the stamp duty, land registry and legal costs, totalling £9,244.50.
Over the following months, he fitted the house with a £2,600 kitchen, and had £5,857.63 worth of decorating done.

He claimed for carpets, a laminate floor, tiling and sanding, curtains, blinds, curtain rails and repairs to a garage door.

After a shopping spree at IKEA in 2006, he submitted claims for items including cushions costing £4.99, a £2.49 cake pan and £1.50 paper napkins.

The following July, Mr Clegg had £680 worth of gardening carried out, including work to “build small wall in rose garden”, followed by £760 for the repair of his garden path.
He wrote to the Commons fees office: “When I bought the house the garden had been neglected for years and was very overgrown.

The work undertaken was to deal with this and get the garden back into a position where it can be maintained easily going forwards.” He then employed a gardener to work for four hours a week, submitting claims for £260 a month.

In a form covering the period Aug 2 to Dec 13, 2005, Mr Clegg submitted a claim that included £1,657.32 for food. Last summer, the Liberal Democrat leader said the pressures of the financial crisis had forced his family to stop shopping at Ocado, the online retailer that distributes groceries from the Waitrose supermarket.

The claims also include two bills for the Liberal Democrat leader’s home phone in Sheffield, one for £105.88 and the other for £121.56. These detailed four calls to Colombia, including two mobile phones, three to Vietnam, including two mobiles, and 21 calls to Belgium, including six mobiles.

Contacted by The Daily Telegraph about his claims, Mr Clegg said: “These international calls should never have been charged to the taxpayer and I apologise . I have paid back the total cost of £80.20.
NWN:
Does anyone have the list of MPs who voted against making expenses public?

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

http://powersminions.blogspot.com/2009/05/nine-ways-to-steal-election.html




Interesting!

Anonymous said...

'Club class' illegal immigrants are paying £10,000 to fly to Britain on tourist planes

'Club class' illegal migrants are paying up to £10,000-a-head to fly to Britain on tourist flights via Ireland , it emerged today.
While people smugglers charge between £500 and £1000 for places in the back of lorries and trains across the Channel, airborne routes are becoming more popular.
They often have a much better chance of instant success, as expertly forged travel documents including passports and visas are thrown in to the ‘immigration package’.

Anonymous said...

One for Bev.


http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/8048517.stm

Anonymous said...

The pot calling the kettle black again as they are all at it, all THE 655 MP'S CLAIMING THE MAXIMUM AND NEVER THE LEAST corrupt to the end and they can not be sacked because the have not broken any law but the have been found out and that is the bigest crime in there book.

H Rumpole QC.
FORMALY OF THE OLD BAILY IN LONDON AND THEY ALL MAY HAVE TO STAND IN THAT DOCK ONE DAY.

Anonymous said...

OH DEAR!!!

MIGRATION POLICY WAS GUESSWORK Ministers say they are struggling to cope with the influx of immigrants .
MINISTERS have admitted they messed up by letting hordes of eastern Europeans into Britain.

They said the country’s public services are struggling to cope with the influx of immigrants.

Immigration Minister Phil Woolas last night admitted: “We got it wrong.” Ministers believed just 5,000 eastern Europeans would come here every year when the EU opened its borders to the “A8 nations” in 2004.

But 120,000 have flooded in every 12 months. And the Government’s shoddy guesswork has battered services like the NHS.

Mr Woolas suggested nations such as France and Germany forced more foreigners our way by demanding migrants get work permits over seven years.

But Britain opened its borders from the start.

He said: “The lesson from the A8 accession is that the disruptive effects we got wrong, we didn’t predict that properly.

“And the reason why we got it wrong was because we didn’t reckon on the decisions of other European countries.

“We based our assumptions on the idea of a level playing market and of course it turned out not to be.

“And that turned out to have a very significant impact – and still is having a significant impact – on our public services.”

Sir Andrew Green, chairman of the independent Migrationwatch UK body, said: “There was a major miscalculation made.

“At the time they said 5,000 to 13,000 a year. We said that estimate was worthless, that 40,000 would be a cautious estimate.

“We were wrong. The Government was 10 times wrong.”

richard chadfield said...

I read the headline in to-days Daily Mail 13/5/2009. (yes,I apologise for spending my money on an establishment mouth piece) "It is 'Payback Time'". The article goes on to say that David Cameron has ordered :'Tory MP's to pay back their 'excessive' expenses claims'
This is interesting phraseology. You will notice that they are not to pay back illegally claimed expenses. Just 'excessive expenses'(whatever they are--who knows?). Now to my mind a claim is either proper and legal in which case no matter what its value is it is not excessive or it is an illegal claim.
So,by my reasoning, Mr Cameron by asking Tory MP's to pay back 'excessive claims' (as headlined in the DM)is either requireing Tory MP's to surrender that to which they are legally entitled (which he must not do for by doing such he mocks the law) or he is attmpting to hide the illegality of his Tory MP's expense claims under the phrase 'excessive claims'. Which is it?
I intuititivly suspect that these MP expense claims are within the law. After all they will have been examined and passed as within the law by some parliamentary body will they not? So what this affair
demonstates,to me, is that we have greedy, unscrupulous MP's and a rotten system of rewards (expenses) for MP's. The solution is quite simple. Mp's must not be allowed to claim any expenses. (see my previous post)No this is not being hard to MP's. The salary of a backbench MP is about seventy thousand pounds a year. If that is not enough for him/her let him/her go and earn a living elsewhere. People who are money orientated do not belong in politics--they corrupt politics.
Richard Chadfield
PS. Anyone seen the BNP leaderships expense claims? True they are not drawn on the public purse just the BNP memberships purse but I suspect quite a lot of people,perhaps the entire membership, would like to see them. (varifiable of course.)

Anonymous said...

MORE CORRUPTION AT OUR EXPENSE!!!

Failed asylum families offered flats
At least 20 failed asylum seekers with dependent children will be offered support in private flats rather than being held in the Dungavel detention centre.

The pilot scheme, aimed at encouraging families to return home voluntarily in a more humane and dignified way, will begin in Glasgow next month.

The £125,000 project will provide flats for about five families of asylum seekers at a time, and help them plan a return to their home country.

However, it will not remove the need for what the UK Border Agency describes as "enforced returns", and dawn raids - currently taking place at a rate of one a month - will still form part of their strategy in Scotland.

In its current format the three-year pilot will be able to cater for 20 families a year, but UKBA figures suggest that 40 families may be eligible and the controversial practice of sending children to Dungavel will be reduced but not ended.

In October, Jim Murphy, the Scottish Secretary, announced that from early next year up to four families at a time would be housed in ex-council flats in Glasgow before they were sent back to their countries of origin.

The pilot was welcomed as a "a step towards" ending the detention of children in the Dungavel centre in Lanarkshire, but campaigners have warned that the devil may be in the detail and it will need to be rigorously assessed.

The scheme, which involves Glasgow City Council, the UKBA and the Scottish Government, will offer failed asylum seekers with dependent children the option of spending up to three months in a flat in Kinning Park with a dedicated social worker and package of measures to ease their return.

The flats will be fully furnished and have satellite television and native language newspapers to help re-familiarise people with the countries they are returning to. Children should be allowed to stay on at their schools in other parts of the city.

It involves social work staff working with the families to help them face the "reality" of their position in Scotland.The aim is to reduce the need for enforced return of families whom the agency and the courts agree do not require international protection.

While there is already a system for helping refused asylum seekers who wish to return home voluntarily, this is said to be the first Scottish project to bring families together in designated accommodation to get dedicated help.

Phil Taylor, Regional Director of the UKBA, said it was far better for people to return home "under their own steam" rather than be forcibly removed.

"We only detain families as a last resort when they refuse to return home despite the courts confirming that they do not require protection," he said.

"This project is a small step along the way, and it is likely that some families who fail to return home voluntarily will still have to be detained and their departure enforced.

"However, we are all committed to making that number as small as we possibly can."

The practice of dawn raids in which families of failed asylum seekers are taken from their homes to Dungavel detention centre ahead of deportation has been regularly criticised.

Recent figures suggest that at least 19 children have been detained with their families in Dungavel this year.

While the Scottish Government has no authority to intervene in Dungavel, as asylum matters are reserved to Westminster, ministers and local councils are responsible for child welfare.

Following a surprise inspection at Dungavel last year, Chief Inspector of Prisons Anne Owers said: "The plight of detained children remains of great concern. An immigration removal centre can never be a suitable place for children."

Yesterday Fiona Hyslop, the Education Secretary, said: "Asylum seekers must be treated fairly and humanely. This is at the heart of this new innovative and exciting pilot in which Scotland will lead the way for the entire UK.

"The Scottish Government remains fundamentally opposed to the detention of children and dawn raids and considers that one child detained is one child too many."

Referring to the scheme, Scottish Secretary Jim Murphy said: "I think everyone across Scotland agrees, if there is a better way to treat families seeking asylum then we should look at those possibilities. The interests of children, regardless of their immigration status, have to be the first priority.

"This is a better way of doing things."

ENGLISHMAN said...

So having admitted that they "got it wrong"(if you believe that you will believe anything),thats all right then,we can carry on living in third world squallor,being murdered,and our women raped,our country defrauded and our indigenous population replaced,business as usual and an apology has solved all our problems!

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