Thursday, July 02, 2009
Channelling taxpayer's money into party funds.
Story on BBC this morning and on Dragon's eye tonight involves the amount of money that Welsh MPs and AMs channel into party funds under the cloak of rents and repairs. Nothing wrong with paying rent for an office (in my opinion) - as long as its at a proper valuation. When I was an Assembly Member, I rented a room from the local Conservative Association. I asked an estate agent to advise what it should be. It was between £3k and £4k as I remember it. But I heard figures on Dragon's Eye that made my eyes water - at least what Lembit Opik pays the Liberal Democrat Association in Montgomeryshire. While total spending by the 10 Liberal Democrats in Wales was a total of £46k, over £30k of it was in Montgomeryshire. When this is added to the huge sums which LO spends on the Communications Allowance, which is in effect an MPs re-election pot, I'm surprised that there are not gold plated doorknobs on the Lib Dems office.