Parliament to hide MPs' funded addresses amid security fears

Posted On: 
10th August 2018

Parliament will restrict the details it publishes about MPs' taxpayer-funded homes amid fears over security, it has emerged.

MPs will no longer have to share part of their postcode with the public
PA Images

The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) said MPs will no longer have to make public the first few digits of postcodes of accommodation they rent for work purposes.

In a bid to tighten security around parliamentarians, expenses information will only display whether a property is in an MP’s constituency or in London, as well as the rental cost.

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Currently MPs can claim £22,850 a year for a rental property in London, or £15,940 for properties outside the capital.

The move marks a further shift from last year, when MPs were told they no longer needed to give details of their landlord or to give information about where they travelled to or from when claiming mileage expenses.

Labour MP John Mann told the Telegraph that more information should be made available to the public.

He said: “If I’m claiming my home is in the Isle of Skye and I’m claiming for that people should be entitled to know that. It needs some common sense…

“A compromise could be reached on this that allows transparency without compromising security.”

Steve Goodrich from Transparency UK said: “There are ways to ensure a balance can be struck between the imperatives of security and the public’s right to know.

“Whilst this is a fine line to tread, it appears that Ipsa may have erred too far in caution at the expense of meaningful transparency.

"What is needed is an approach that allows scrutiny of potentially false claims whilst ensuring parliamentarians are not subject to undue security risks.”