Magazine article The Spectator

MPs' Expenses

Magazine article The Spectator

MPs' Expenses

Article excerpt

Sir: Your editorial on MPs' expenses is quite right (11 April). We cannot, as a nation, afford for democracy to go down the plughole with the poorly defined and executed remuneration and sloppy support package that MPs currently have. The easiest way to resolve the problem is simply to apply the rules that apply to everyone else. No capital gains should be able to be made by MPs out of items subsidised by the taxpayer. In all other aspects of life, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs look very closely at, for instance, if a director of a company employs a wife or husband.

HMRC often decides that the income of the spouse should be disallowed, reduced or added to that of the director, so that HMRC can take top whack tax from the duo. It is seen as a diversionary tactic for tax purposes. …

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