» Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Put that the Prime Minister sounded exasperated when talking about the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA), the PMS said that the Prime Minister was making the point that the system as it stood was not working. This was not about the rules, or about the fact that IPSA was independent; it was the way the system was working. It had been an ongoing issue and MPs from all sides had been making their views known.

Asked whether the Prime Minister would accept that the public would not have much sympathy for MPs moaning about a tighter expenses regime, the PMS said that it was not a question of it being a tighter regime; it was right that there should be a system that the public had confidence in and the Prime Minister had made that point in the House.

There was a separate point that the system needed to work, so that MPs could make the claims that they were allowed to.

Put that the Prime Minister had originally endorsed IPSA and what had changed since then, the PMS said that this had been an ongoing issue. There had been problems with the bureaucracy of the system and those problems had not been resolved. The Prime Minister was completely supportive of having an independent statutory body and having a cleaned up expenses system that was transparent and one that the public had confidence in.

Asked if the Prime Minister was concerned that it could look like people were ganging up on IPSA, the PMS replied that the Speaker’s Committee had an oversight role for IPSA.

IPSA was also accountable to the Public Accounts Committee because the NAO had an oversight role and audited IPSA. So there were ways by which IPSA was held to account, as people would expect of a body spending public money.

original source.

Briefing took place at 15:45 | Search for related news

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