Nov
22

MP’s expenses receipts not to be published proactively

posted on November 22nd 2010 in Democracy & News with 0 Comments

According to the IPSA site (no deep-linking so click on News) Sir Ian Kennedy has decided not to proactively publish the receipts for MP expenses.  He says that 

IPSA will not be publishing receipts proactively –the cost of preparing tens of thousands of receipts for publication would be more than £1 million a year and would not provide value for taxpayers’ money.

This is quote extraordinary considering there were 22,000 claims. It would mean a quote of £45 per receipt.

Unlock Democracy are asking supporters to write to Sir Ian and ask him to reconsider his decision.  I've done this.  You can see the text below.  I'll post a response if I receive one.

Dear Sir Ian,

I noticed from your press release that IPSA are not planning to "proactively" publish MP's expense receipts because it would cost over £1 million.

Whilst I applaud the attention you are paying to the effective use of public money I would appreciate the answer to a couple of questions.

Firstly, if the reciepts are not being published proactively will they be published upon request and please can you outline the process for requesting their publication?

Secondly, the release states that there are 22,000 claims. This means you are being quoted £45 to scan and redact each receipt. It is perfectly feasible (and I have someone employed here who used to do a very similar job) to scan 200 receipts per day, enter key details onto a database and redact sensitive information. This means the job could easily be done for £50,000 per year. Seeing as cost is the prime reason for not publishing the receipts please could you provide the details of how your team came up with this cost and whether you would reconsider the decision if someone were to undertake to do the business for a more reasonable amount?

I look forward to your reply which with your permission I shall publish on www.gallomanor.com.

Kind regards,

Shane

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