Bercow Rips Off Taxpayer with £12,000 Leaving Parties and £1,000 Taxi

We hoped we’d seen the last of Bercow-induced rage stories but just when you thought he was finally out of the public consciousness it has now been revealed he expensed a £1,000 taxi to Nottingham and his various leaving parties to the tune of £12,000 in his last few months. This is expenses scandal level…

The taxi journey, revealed thanks to a Daily Mail FoI, took Bercow from parliament to Nottingham Trent University, for a speech about how Parliament should respond to the ‘anti-politics age’. A good start would be not fleecing the taxpayer for your ego-induced jollies…

He also spent thousands on farewell tours, including:

  • £7,000 visit to the US (where he gave a speech encouraging MPs to block No Deal)
  • £3,696 retirement party for the Principle Clerk of the House
  • £3,187 retirement party for the Clerk of the House
  • £3,168 retirement party for the Speaker’s Chaplain
  • £2,376 retirement party for Commons ‘Invitations Secretary’
  • £1,400 dinner with presiding officers from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
  • £234 drinks bill for MPs
  • £118 Sky subscription
  • £74 Heathrow Express to Edinburgh festival

By contrast, when moving into speaker’s house last week, Sir Lindsay came down by train in standard class..

mdi-timer 14th January 2020 @ 10:02 am 14th Jan 2020 @ 10:02 am mdi-comment Comments
EU Blocks Publication of MEPs’ Expenses – Again

The EU has again blocked the publication of MEPs’ expenses, with Euro-judges today quashing a three-year battle by journalists to get the documents published after the European Parliament itself previously refused to hand over any details. The judges in the ECJ’s sister court ruled that the Parliament was right not to publish the documents as it would enable the MEPs to be individually identified. That’s precisely the point…

Scandalously, MEPs will still be able to spend their annual €50,000 ‘General Expenditure Allowance’ – which they receive on top of their €100,000+ annual salary – without providing any proof of how the money of how the money was spent. MPs’ expenses were the political scandal of the decade in the UK – it’s just par for the course in Brussels…

So if the documents can’t be published because they would identify which MEPs are presently pouring your money down the drain, surely the EU will at least be making them available to the public in redacted form? Not so.

The European Court has blocked this too on the grounds that there wouldn’t be “any useful effect” in publishing the documents – precisely because they did not identify individual MEPs. Even Kafka’s worst nightmares can’t have come close to this…

mdi-timer 25th September 2018 @ 2:39 pm 25th Sep 2018 @ 2:39 pm mdi-comment Comments
Dent Coad Denies Election Expenses Claims

Emma Dent Coad has come out swinging after being reported to the police by democracy campaigner Stuart Coster over her election expenses, telling the Standard: “These entirely baseless allegations make the erroneous assumption that one has to spend a lot of money to win an election”, and adding that she fought the seat “from my kitchen table with loads of volunteers”. Guido hopes she thought that line through…

This is Dent Coad’s election communication for the 2017 election. The imprint is personal to Dent Coad locally (not the national party), the content is fully local and can’t be considered national costs, yet the imprint refers to the printer “Sterling Press Ltd” which appears nowhere on the list of suppliers of her “Unsolicited material to electors”. A Labour source says Dent Coad declared a payment for her election communication to the Labour Party, which was then centrally paid to Sterling Press, in accordance with electoral law.

The leaflet also invites readers to order a poster (which a Labour source says was a Labour poster and therefore national spend), quotes a mobile phone number and refers to a web address – the costs for none of which during the regulated period are included in her return. Did she really only spend five grand on her entire election campaign?

mdi-timer 27th June 2018 @ 2:17 pm 27th Jun 2018 @ 2:17 pm mdi-comment Comments
Lord Moat: Brexit Only an Interim Decision

Douglas Hogg, the disgraced former Tory minister who filed a £2,000 expenses claim to have his moat cleaned, has tabled his “Stop Brexit” motion in the Lords this afternoon. The amendment, backed by Labour and LibDem Remainers, seeks to allow parliament to control the negotiations, including extending the negotiating process and potentially keeping us in the EU indefinitely. It is a naked attempt by Hogg and other Remain peers to reverse Brexit. As he told the Lords: “At the very best Brexit was only an interim decision”. Left the Commons in disgrace as the poster boy for the expenses scandal, then tried to stop Brexit from the Lords. What a contribution to public life.

mdi-timer 30th April 2018 @ 3:50 pm 30th Apr 2018 @ 3:50 pm mdi-comment Comments
Civil Servant Awarded Huge Payout After Baroness Scotland Loses Employment Case

A senior Commonwealth Secretariat civil servant, who was forced to resign during the Baroness Scotland expenses scandal after being accused of leaking to the press, has won his claim for breach of contract against his old employer. Ram Venuprasad said he was “marked out” by Scotland after he complained internally about her shameless spending splurge, which Guido reported in detail at the time. Scotland refused to appear at the tribunal and the Commonwealth Secretariat will now have to give Venuprasad a huge taxpayer-funded payout, which could reach as high as six figures. Baroness Brazen blowing more of your money…

mdi-timer 27th April 2018 @ 5:15 pm 27th Apr 2018 @ 5:15 pm mdi-comment Comments
Mr Toynbee’s Fine Dining Brass Neck

In the Guardian yesterday David Walker, Mr Polly Toynbee, bemoaned the abolition of the Audit Commission by Eric Pickles at DCLG and complained that there isn’t a quango to police councillors guilty of “fine dining at Le Caprice and the Ritz”. Oddly Walker forgets to mention that he was the six-figure Director of Communications for the Audit Commission before its abolition. Nor does he declare that he used taxpayers’ money to wine and dine other quangos such as the National Audit Office, socialising at taxpayers’ expense at the Reform Club, Footstool restaurant and the Ebury Wine Bar. Walker and his guests blew £1,766 of taxpayers’ cash on restaurant bills in 2009 alone, before he left and trousered a £30,000 payoff. The motto of the Audit Commission when Walker was there was “protecting the public purse”…

mdi-timer 23rd February 2018 @ 4:00 pm 23rd Feb 2018 @ 4:00 pm mdi-comment Comments
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