Tuesday, 3 November 2009

It's time for individuals to tackle the MP expenses fiasco to restore faith in politics and politicians

It is all to easy for MPs and candidates to sit back and wait for independent reports on the future of MP expenses. The reality is this is just an excuse for some not to take personal responsibility and start acting in a way the public finds acceptable.

David Cameron has made it clear every Conservative MP will have to conform to a standard higher than that currently imposed by House of Commons authorities. I am happy to go along with this and to go further so that the people of East Renfrewshire can have faith that if they elect a Conservative MP the highest levels of probity will be adhered to in their name.


1) I will publish online details of all my personal expenses incurred as a Member of Parliament

2) I will publish online details of all my office expenses incurred as a Member of Parliament

3) I will publish online details of all donations of more than £1,000, in line with Electoral Commission rules

4) I will appoint a local firm of auditors to approve expense accounts at the end of every financial year and publish their report in an Annual Report produced and distributed at no cost to the taxpayer

5) I will provide unedited copies of all expense claims to local newspapers at the end of every financial year

6) I will never claim for food

7) My first home will always be in East Renfrewshire where I live with my wife and baby boy

8) I will never claim for furniture or household goods

9) I will meet all tax liabilities - such as Stamp Duty - without claiming them from the taxpayer

This very simple nine point plan represents a new way of thinking at Westminster and would place East Renfrewshire at the forefront of the public's demand for change.

The UK Parliament is known around the world as the "mother of all parliaments" and we must restore public faith in our parliament at home if we are to be treated seriously abroad. So let's get on and effect change by having a General Election so that the public can pass judgement on a tired and directionless regime. The job of candidates is to ensure we give them a real choice as to what type of politics, and politician, they want to represent them in future.

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