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MPs’ £680k bill for expenses
9:00am Friday 14th September 2012 in Keighley
Bradford district’s MPs claimed a total of more than £680,000 in expenses in 14 months, it has been revealed.
New figures released by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA), set up in the wake of the scandal which saw four MPs jailed, detail MPs’ claims from April last year to the end of May.
Expenses are published online every two months as part of the drive for transparency and the latest annual figures include claims for April and May, according to IPSA.
The figures show Shipley Conservative MP Philip Davies, whose constituency includes Cullingworth and Denholme, claimed £145,175.81 and Keighley Conservative MP Kris Hopkins £138,415.87.
An average of £100,000 for each MP is staffing costs and thousands of pounds of bills were submitted for running their constituency offices.
The remainder is claimed for London rents while they are in Westminster and travel to and from the constituency. The expenses body also said it is possible an MP has since made additional claims relating to the financial year 2011/12. Nationally £89 million was spent.
IPSA chairman Sir Ian Kennedy said the new transparent process was “inconceivable” a few years ago. He said the data showed the MPs expenses scandal is “behind us” and MPs are abiding by the rules.
Mr Kennedy added: “There will be some who might say ‘this is too much’ or ‘I could do it for less’. But we should look at the issue in more depth. MPs are there to represent us.”