Spink: ‘I’ve been fighting to scrap all the allowances altogether… for a number of years. Now they are all… jumping on the bandwagon’

SPEAKING ON GATEWAY FM earlier today, Bob Spink, our local MP, said:-

‘I’ve been fighting for more transparency and to actually scrap all the allowances altogether, to stop MPs having second jobs, to make sure that the House Of Commons (not the MPs themselves) is the employer of all the staff so that there’s clarity there as well.

‘I’ve been fighting for these things for a number of years on the record, laying down early day motions with no local MPs, and certainly not the Labour or Conservative Party, having supported my motions when I have been putting them down in 2007, 2008, 2009. Now they are all supporting them, they are all jumping on the bandwagon, so I am delighted by that.

‘I think I was the only local MP to hold a public meeting to take questions and answer all those questions as honestly and openly as I can. And I publish my expenses as I make them on the Internet, although people have said: “This is embarrassing, Bob. You are giving us too much detail. For goodness sake calm down.”’

Spink's Makro receipt Of course, that does not mean to say that our Bob has any intention of ceasing his own claims (to set an example) — and it apparently does not mean that he should desist from padding his own expenses whenever he gets the chance.

Earlier in the year, this blog revealed how Spink had bogusly claimed £2,425.86 by using both invoices and statements to obtain payment for expenditure that he had not even made. Now, in his latest set of expenses, published today, it appears that, no matter how trivial the expense, Bob is determined to ensure he squeezes the maximum amount of taxpayers’ money from it for his own pocket.

The inset Makro invoice, taken from his expenses file, shows the lengths to which our MP will go in examining his personal receipts for anything he can attribute to his role as an MP. And it also goes to show how lax the Fees Office is in allowing spurious claims, without checking them.

The receipt is for a credit card payment for what is apparently Spink’s personal expenditure of £137.33 at Makro’s in Rayleigh — so under the strict terms of the ACA, which state that ‘you can only claim for costs you have actually paid,’ the expense should have been disallowed anyway. Nonetheless, it seems that Bob was in the market for some new pillows and saw some that he liked at Makros. The Christy Luxury Hollow Fibre was on special offer (buy two, get one free) so Bob bought two. Total cost £6.50.

Other Christy pillows caught his eye too: the Christy Essential Pillow, of which he bought two pairs at £9.99 each. Total cost £19.98.

It is unclear which was destined for his personal residence (or which personal residence that might be) but it is obvious that Bob thought he would charge the most expensive of the two purchases to the taxpayer. This he did. Four pillows (two pairs), at a cost of £19.98.

While he was there, he picked up 50 heavy duty bin-liners, presumably for his Westminster flat — and a Clear and Chrome brush, which the flat apparently also needed. Total cost to be charged to the taxpayer: £10.48.

In all he would offset £30.46.

It obviously never occurred to him to pass-on his windfall of the £6.50 Christy Luxury Hollow Fibre discount to the taxpayer. Instead he opted to keep that for himself.

Hollow fibre pillows — and plenty of hollow words…

… (11/12/2009) – Misleading The Public Again, Bob…

… (12/12/2009) – Bob And Other MPs Exploit Loophole To Claim Thousands Without Receipts


One Response

  1. Love the “you are giving us too much detail link”.

    LOL :-)

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