Thursday, 14 May 2009

MPs Expenses and What Should Come Next

It is clearly evident that government has been pouring our money away in a totally unacceptable way and that a major review of how government at all levels spends our money on the people involved in government is needed.

I think it important to maintain credibility at a local level that Kent county councillors, Thanet district councillors and parish councillors should publish their expenses and that the council’s websites should set up areas where this will be done.

Next there is the matter of civil servants, looking at various government accounts it would appear that extra notice is taken of those whose total remuneration exceeds £50,000 per annum.

I believe that breakdowns of their pay and expenses should also be published, the sums here can be fairly large and certainly on Thanet District Council’s website they are displayed in a way that appears rather vague for such large sums of money.

Looking at their accounts for 2006/07 it says that one employee received combined pay and expenses of between £170,000 and £180,000 there is no more detail than that.

This is more money than the amount that Mr MacKay, the MP for Bracknell in Berkshire has just resigned over claiming.

I also believe that where civil servants receive more than £50,000 per year their qualifications should be published and where those qualifications don’t justify their income steps should be taken to reduce it.


  1. A bit of an intellectual snob arent you then ?

    Qualifications, what about the university of hard knocks ?

    Also if you are going to analyse the expenses of local councillors what sort of work / council balance do you expect people involved in the different tiers to have.

    Do you expect a cabinet member on TDC to be able to hold down a seperate full time job, or even a part-time one ?

    Does the same hold for a regular TDC or KCC Councillor and what do expect with respect to parish councillors.

    These people if we are to encourage a broad cross section of society could well be mothers/fathers or carers for parents with financial commitments.

    If the Kent public expect certain things in terms of commitment from their elected representatives are they in turn prepared to pay for it ?

  2. With regard to publication of County Councillors and TDC Councillors I think all expenses claims should be transparent and published. Any that do not wish to implement this system must have something to hide.

  3. 11.44 yes I am prepared to pay for local government but I expect expenses to be properly accounted for, one either has a system where councillors get a fixed sum for the job, or one where they get expenses based on attendance or where they have to provide expenses accounts supported by invoices and receipts as every business has to in this country.

    Intellectual snob maybe no ones ever called me that before, probably because I am not intellectual enough, but if the taxes I pay are being used to pay someone over £1,000 per week I wish to know that it is money well spent.

    You seem to be under the misapprehension that we don’t have councillors that also have jobs.

  4. Not at all, I am simply pointing out thatthe public is schizophrenic they want their councillors to be at their beck and call 24/7 working tirelessly for their community and yet just want to chuck them a few quid for petrol to attend meetings.

    If you want a professional service from your councillors you need to pay them sufficiently well that they can afford to dedicate the time to it.

  5. 15.06 I wish you anonymous people would adopt a nickname, what you are talking about here is a wage which is quite different to expenses, people work turn up get an hourly rate for the job dependent on qualifications, experience and ability this I find quite acceptable.

    When I worked in industry you also had management they had gone down the road of obtaining higher education appropriate to their position, they were paid a salary, this I also find acceptable.

  6. Well is this story apocryphal ?

    A former Head of TDC Tourism and Leisure Dept was an ex Deck Chair attendant with no qualifications.

    He was unable to understand a report from an agency with grant aid funding available. When the grant aid civil servant visited Thanet he was told "I was waiting for you to come aht and explain it to me like" and Thanet got diddly ?

    "Educated by the school of hard knocks" is the usual trite bunkum that unqualified useless drivellers produce to aggrandize themselves.

    We have a serious aquifer contamination issue. Do we need qualified officers in TDC to deal with this. Of course we do.

    In 1984 the Institute of Electrical Engineers published their research into management in our industry. 93% unqualified by either education OR EXPERIENCE. (They had the School of Hard knocks drivel argument headed off before they started because they researched for it)

  7. I should add in Petbow's favour that they bucked the trend by having 100% unqualified management in our department.

  8. Dear Anonymouse,

    What about the 'university of hard knocks'? Please explain.

  9. Dear anonymouse,

    I have been thinking about your praise for the university of hard knocks. Presumably, you would not object to being operated upon by a surgeon who had learned his trade in 'the university of hard knocks?

  10. 11:44, they used to!! Oh how rich to indicate aspects of bringing a professional approach to local egotistical approach more like.

    Cllr, you are the weakest link "Your Fired".


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