Search

£400,000 expenses bill for three MPs

PUBLISHED: 10:45 09 April 2009 | UPDATED: 10:36 23 August 2010





Date: 25.04.08



Adam Holloway and local MP's hold a press conference about the Dartford Toll crossing



Ref:  Pictures by  Andy Barnes

Date: 25.04.08 Adam Holloway and local MP's hold a press conference about the Dartford Toll crossing Ref: Pictures by Andy Barnes

Kentish Times

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate is urging all MPs to justify their expenses after it was revealed more than £400,000 was paid to three MPs within a year. Dartford MP, Dr Howard Stoate claimed £147,732 and Gravesham MP, Adam Holloway received £146,933, accordin

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate is urging all MPs to justify their expenses after it was revealed more than £400,000 was paid to three MPs within a year.

Dartford MP, Dr Howard Stoate claimed £147,732 and Gravesham MP, Adam Holloway received £146,933, according to a published list of expenses for the financial year beginning in April 2007.

Sevenoaks MP, Michael Fallon claimed the least at £119, 667, which is paid on top of the £61,820 basic salary

This week a Populous poll also revealed a major drop in public confidence of MPs, with 27 per cent of people saying that nearly all MPs abuse the system and 42 per cent feel that the majority are abusing the system.

Dartford candidate Gareth Johnson said: "The public has lost faith in the ability of MPs to show honesty when it comes to expenses.

"We are a commuter town and it's important for MPs to commute with the people they represent. A second home allowance for a Dartford member is totally unnecessary and if elected I will not be claiming it. It is incumbent on MPs to restore faith in the system. The public have lost their confidence in MPs and that is a dangerous thing.

"It angers people to see apparent abuses of the system, regardless of whether it is within the current rules."

The second home allowance was designed to aid MPs who have to attend the Commons late at night and would find it hard to get home on a regular basis.

Mr Holloway, whose constituency is 25 miles from The Commons, defended the £22,587 he claimed for his 'staying away from the main home allowance'.

He said "We just can't win, the mood now questioning all that we can claim. I think the question should be asked: how accessible do we want our MPs to be?

"When I was elected I simply couldn't afford to run my own second home because I spent all my savings canvassing for a year and a half.

"I gave up the allowance for five months this year and tried commuting but my life was pretty miserable. I was finding I couldn't book meetings in the diary just so that I could get a decent amount of sleep. If constituents want to be able to contact their MP pretty much seven days a week then there needs to be a concession."

He added: "We earn less than a middle management salary, it's a big ask to fund two houses."

Dr Stoate, whose constituency office in Dartford, is 15 miles from Westminster, claimed £17,883 for his city accommodation and Michael Fallon, £22,853.

Both Michael Fallon and Dr Howard Stoate were unavailable as the Reporter went to press.

martin.sawden@archant.co.uk

What do YOU think? Write to michael.adkins@archant.co.uk or call 01474 320749

0 comments

Latest News

A popular Dartford garage has been named the winner of a prestigious business award.

A pub in Greenhithe has been given permission to extend its weekend opening hours despite concerns relating to noise and anti-social behaviour.

Mon, 11:19

Officers investigating a collision in Dartford after a vehicle failed to stop for police are appealing for witnesses.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Mayor of Gravesham cllr David Hurley led a crowd of cadets, scouts, brownies, councillors, members of Kent Police and more to Windmill Hill Gardens this morning (Sunday, November 11) in a procession to mark Remembrance Day.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Jamie Brown, of Archant Local Impact, explains how to make your business stand out from the crowd

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Wondering what the weather has in store for us this weekend? Watch our Met Office video forecast.

Most read

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Gravesend Reporter e-edition today
E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Gravesend Reporter twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Show Job Lists

Family Notices 24