Red Alert

MPs’ expenses

Posted by on July 30th, 2009

At long last we have disclosure of individual MPs spending. I welcome it.

Read carefully – remember some MPs have to travel enormous distances to get to Wellington – often by car as well as plane,  some have Wellington accommodation costs, others don’t, and some portfolios mean that there is much more travel required.

Ministersial travel travel and accommodation spending  hereTravel Spending on travel and accommodation other than ministerial here.

Update: Here’s a PDF, total spending, rank order.

18 Responses to “MPs’ expenses”

  1. Kyle Whitfield says:

    I also think that it is good that MPs expenses have been disclosed, and believe that the level of information which has been released is enough and should satisfy most.

    The information released today shows the general public that our MPs are not claiming for moat cleaning and such like.

    I am pleased that this information will be released quarterly.

  2. Quoth the Raven says:

    Though Douglas is claiming for a holiday and business related trips. He has no electorate and is spending more than some that do. It is most hypocritical.

  3. Hooligan says:

    Raven, agree with you regarding Douglas. He’s a bloody Hypocrite! I suppose I should be accused of being a beneficiary basher, politicians are just well paid bennys after all. You’d expect this profligacy from the red & blue teams, coming from so-called Mr Anti-waste; he’s just as big a bludger as the rest.

  4. Sean says:

    I’ve browsed the information, everything looks reasonable given if we want parliamentarians to do their jobs they have to be funded. I’ll imagine there are some political journalists who are unhappy over the lack of scandal found in the figures.

    As for Mr Douglas: his totals may be high in relation to other backbenchers, but let’s wait until more reports have been released, and we’ll see if these figures are normal or just a once-off.

    As an outsider: why do only some MPs get Inter-Parliamentary Office of the Clerk expenses?

  5. Tim Ellis says:

    This is interesting. There doesn’t seem to be anything really out of the ordinary at first glance.

    It would be interesting to do an analysis of Auckland-based backbenchers, Auckland-based frontbenchers, Christchurch-based, Dunedin-based, provincial-based etc.

    I sense that the reality of disclosure will provide a policing mechanism on its own, and it’s good that the public has assurance that whips aren’t allowing MPs to game the system.

  6. Trevor Mallard says:

    @ Sean – because only some have been involved in that sort of official travel.

  7. Harry Renouf says:

    ALso be interesting to see a combined list. I know Ministers have more obligations, but be good to see how, eg junior ministers compare with frontbenchers from Opp parties.

  8. Trevor Mallard says:

    Working on it.

  9. Phil Lyth says:

    @Sean, the sort of official travel includes the visit by the Foreign Affairs Defence and Trade Committee to Niue Cook Islands Samoa and Tonga at the beginning of this month; and the Speakers Tour at Easter, five MPs travelling to Japan and Vietnam. Organised by the ‘Inter-Parliamentary Relations Office’ of the Office of the Clerk – hence the title of the part of the expenses report.

    [admin, how can I insert a link to the specific part of the Parliament site?]

    Is this what you wanted Trevor

    The reverse happens all the time with foreign MPs visitng our Parliament. IMHO, these are valuable exchanges.

  10. Sean says:

    @ Trevor

    Thank you, that explains everything.

  11. Sean says:

    And thanks Phil.

  12. Harry Renouf says:

    Appreciate the combined list – I think it makes for some useful comparisons. Obviously Foreign Affairs Minister and PM travel alot. But interesting to see where other party leaders pop up in the list of total spend Sharples 8th, Goff 11th, Hide 19th, Turia 21st, Dunne 28th, Turei 35th Norman 83rd (so much for him spending up large in Mt Albert!), Anderton 97th

  13. Delivery Boy says:

    Well done to all parties and the speaker for releasing this information. Good to see local Wellington M.P.s well down the list.

  14. Ann Pala says:

    Cuts in education and health.. Its unbelievable the high travel expenses. it is ridiculous.. but then it is easier to spend money that is not ones own (not hard earned anyway) and did someone mention ‘child poverty in NZ’??

  15. Marcus says:

    Interesting to look a bit more closely at the XLS file of Ministers expenses. There are lots of hidden cells.$file/MinistersExpenses.xls

  16. Unpleasantly Odouriferous says:

    Does this include ministerial services costs? If so, it explains the preponderance of Ministers at the top. If not, well….

  17. Herodotus says:

    The list contains only current M.P’s, who from a constituency level are at least active (At least attending parliament). If Sir Roger Douglaus was not an active MP we would have been any the wiser of this trip
    I would like to know what past memebers are claiming?

  18. stabin theback says:

    As much as we can moan about the ‘amount’ of spending which is extortionate but the disclosure has revealled something far more allarming in my book – the ‘values’ of those at the top-(financially speaking). It maybe within the rules to spend on these things but those that continually spend on family travel, holidays with no gain for NZ for all the Whanau and those that expect their second mansion paid for are in my book far removed from those on DPB trying to get off it and into work they had before they gave up their life to bring up well the next generation!