Thursday, 8 November 2007

MP claims £55,000 more expenses than Prime Minister

LIBERAL Democrat MP Jeremy Browne was the most expensive of the Parliamentarians representing the Greater Exmoor area in the past financial year - claiming a staggering £55,000 more in expenses than the Prime Minister.
Mr Browne (pictured) cost taxpayers more than £200,000 during the 2006-07 year after claiming more in expenses than Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, his own party leader Sir Menzies Campbell, and even then-Deputy Prime Minister John ‘Two Jags’ Prescott.
On top of his £60,000-plus annual salary, Mr Browne was paid £143,176 in expenses, which included more than £22,000 for staying in London, more than £20,000 to run his office, and £87,000 for his staff.
The Taunton Deane MP put in expenses claims which fell only a few pounds short of the maximum possible he could receive for ‘staying away from home’ and for running his office, and he was actually just over the top limit for his staffing costs.
His Lib Dem colleague for North Devon, Nick Harvey, claimed a similarly staggering amount of expenses, totalling slightly more than Mr Browne at £144,687.
Meanwhile, West Somerset and Bridgwater Conservative MP Ian Liddell-Grainger claimed £134,421 in expenses, while his Conservative colleague for Mid Devon, Angela Browning received £141,381.
By comparison, Mr Blair, who was then Prime Minister, received £87,342, Mr Prescott £115,013, Sir Menzies £123,617, Gordon Brown £134,586, and Tory party leader David Cameron £135,729.
The TaxPayers’ Alliance said MPs should be ‘ashamed of themselves’ for claiming so much in expenses.
Alliance chief executive Matthew Elliott said: “Families are struggling to pay higher tax bills while MPs are spending more and more of our money on themselves each year.”

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