NEWS17 June 2009

MP rented flat from his own marketing services firm

UK

UK— MP Brian Binley claimed more than £50,000 in expenses over three years to rent a London flat owned by the marketing services company he founded.

Binley started claiming £1,500 a month in rent on the Pimlico property owned by BCC Marketing Services in February 2006.

Initially, Binley said, the arrangement was “totally cleared by the Fees Office” – the department responsible for assessing and paying politicians’ expenses.

But changes to parliamentary rules in April 2006 prevented MPs from paying rent to their own companies.

Binley said: “When the rules were changed which stated that I could not rent from a company that I had an interest in, I appealed that decision. I sadly lost that appeal, accepted the decision of the Speaker [of the House of Commons] and found another flat.”

But according to a report in the Daily Telegraph – which has run a series of exposés on MPs’ expenses since the beginning of May – Binley’s appeal was only rejected two months ago. Up until then he continued to claim for rent on the property.

Details of his expenses, published on his own website, list monthly rent claims of £1,500 until March of this year.

Binley says that the flat he is now renting “unfortunately costs the taxpayer more money because that is the going rate”.

In a statement he said: “I am an MP from a working class background who knows that most of his constituents don’t earn much above the average wage and therefore treats taxpayers’ money with the care it deserves.

“I did rent a flat for the reasons that I have stated from a company that I founded and am proud of. The rent charged included council tax, water rates, electricity, gas, and all the furnishings, white goods etc in the flat. In addition, I paid the cleaner, rightly and properly, from my own pocket.”

The MP for Northampton South was elected in May 2005. He founded BCC Marketing Services in 1988 and the company offers a range of telemarketing and market research interviewing services.

Binley remains chairman of the business and is a 20% shareholder, as is his wife Jacqueline.

@RESEARCH LIVE

1 Comment

12 years ago

i strongly support the disclosure of the information. tracking government official expense(e) is an issue especially where corruption is common. we need to know how much goes in and out of all their bank accounts in all the various banks their total worth before and after taking publc office

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