JJ7 Posted March 31, 2009 Share Posted March 31, 2009 I see Falkirk MP Eric Joyce claims the top spot once again. A member of another forum I go on has had an interesting arguement over email today with Mr Joyce, his local MP. Just shows how out of touch these idiots can be. Constituent I am utterly disgusted by the expenses you have incurred whilst "serving" the constituency of which I am a member, in the last year. The only consolation I have is that I didn't personally vote for you (as I think you are a dreadful politician notwithstanding your troughlike capacity to hoover up taxpayers money). Why exactly do you top the list for expenses for the entire Parliament, given that you "represent" a constituency in the Central belt of Scotland? What extenuating circumstances can you possibly point to which justifies this ludicrous waste of money people like myself contribute to the coffers of the national exchequer. How dare you claim such exhorbitant expenses? It is particularly galling in the current belt-tightening climate withing the UK that Members of Parliament are raiding the larder for all that they can trouser - you of course being at the front of the queue elbowing others out of the way to grab and grasp the goodies. I can only hope my fellow constituents decide you are no longer worthy of election should you choose to stand for office within Falkirk again, and I would be most keen to hear your excuses for this list-topping performance. Eric Joyce "Thanks for this. My allowances are made up of staff pay, office accommodation and travel/accomm in London. Someone, by definition, will always be top of the list. Which bit would you prefer I didn't do? Should I pay my staff less, rent cheaper accommodation (it's hardly over the top at present) or make myself available in the constituency less? Do let me know." Constituent Eric, Thanks for your prompt reply. With respect, your point concerning "someone has to be top" is a ridiculous one, but perhaps I should try another tack. Other MPs clearly have exactly the same issues as you regarding staff, accomodation and travel to deal with, yet they manage to do so whilst spending significantly less. And your ancillary point of "which would I prefer you didn't do?" is even more preposterous. As above, other MPs manage to carry out these aspects of their role without spending anything like as much - unless of course you are suggesting they are shortchanging their constituents by underperforming on any of these measures or being MP of a Falkirk constituency has particular challenges that others do not have to face? As regards the individual points, some more clarification is required. Staff Pay - How many staff members do you have? How much of your total expenses does staff remuneration make up? How does your staff costs benchmark you against other Mmbers of Parliament? i.e. are your staff costs high, medium or low against other MPs? Are any of your staff family members and, whether they are or not, how transparent was the recruitment process by which you came by them? A Office Accomodation - Again, what is the breakdown of office accomodation costs between the constituency and Parliament? I am aware you have an office in Falkirk, in the town centre. How often is it used and for what? Could you move to smaller accomodation? Obviously, Falkirk is hardly in the top strata of UK town centre rental income I expect. How much does this office actually cost you a month? How does this compare with your compatriots? How often are you in the contituency? Travel - this is of particular interest. £34,000 in total!! Scrolling down the list of MPs alphabetically, I see few, if any, in your "class" of claim. I notice your air fares for the period of April 07 to March 08 were £21,459. Many other MPs claimed no air fares, and travelled by train, or presumably other means. Why exactly were your travel fees so great compared to others? How often did you travel home? I notice your family made 28 journeys at the taxpayers expense also. Why so often, and for what purposes? Eric Joyce Why is my point about someone having to be top preposterous? Every year, the media and people like you will write to the person (in the latter case if it happens to be their local MP) who is top of this list. That's just the way it is. My office in Falkirk is used every day - it's where my staff are. I handle over 1000 constituency cases every year. You do maths if you like. I'm there Fri/Sat most Suns (actually in the office) and often Monday mornings. My staff are there every day. Most of the stuff you've asked me for is publicly available - you just need to go to the effort of finding the info at www.parliament.uk rather than being outraged at the Daily Express headline. I don't have any family members on my payroll and I don't own property in London. My allowances are made up of pay for my staff, renting an office (it's competitive), travelling to London and paying rent (not a mortgage) in London. I have hundreds of live cases with constituetns and I'm paid at the level of a Deputy Head or Third Tier council officer. I've no idea why you feel I deserve the bile you're throwing at me. But do come and see me if you feel I can help you in any way in future. Best wishes Eric Constituent The point about "someone having to be top" is preposterous because I said in my second email, let's look not at your position in the list, but in the size of your claim if you prefer, and its amount relative to your colleagues'. Why have you claimed vastly more than other MPs who have to deal with the same issues you do? That's the point Eric! I also do not read the Daily Express. I have no idea why you believe that to be the only publication which has questioned your expenses. You are most certainly out of touch with the views of your constituents (several of whom I have spoken to today who share my outrage) if you wish to dismiss any criticism/critique of your claims as some sort of media-led outrage. If you knew your constituency (and I've lived here much longer than you have) you'd realise people are very sensitive at the moment about finances and what the national exchequer is being spent upon. I note you have completely ignored the specific questions I asked you regarding travel. One of the most disingenuous replies I could have imagined receiving, even from a Member of Parliament. Why do MPs from much further afield, with far more significant travel issues within their own constituency (i.e. Danny Gordon, Lib Dem, Inverness) spend vastly less than you do. I haven't questioned your remuneration package. I work in the private sector and couldn't care less what you earn as a basic salary and what you do with it - that's the figure deemed appropriate for that role and how you use your salary is entirely up to you. I would have no issues in fact were this amount to be increased significantly, as long as MPs were thereafter forced to choose only this vocation, and not subsidise income with other sources. However it is quite clear that (and I have never indicated you are alone here) there is a culture within Westminster of claiming for anything, and all things, which the frankly ludicrous "rules" permit as expenses. We need to rip these up and start again. Perhaps trips between the constituency and Westminster should be curtailed, or restricted to certain types and classes of travel (you also failed to answer whether you always travel using the cheapest tickets available (as a private sector employee, I always do)). Similarly what star hotels do you stay at, if you claim accomodation during any trips for constituency of Parliamentary business? I have no doubt a large part of the expenses will be common to all Members of Parliament - i.e. postage costs, staff costs etc. What is clear however is that you have a significantly higher supplementary total that other Members of Parliament. It is this point I wish to seek clarification on - as I said in paragraph one, and repeat here, what specific constituency issues do you have representing Falkirk, which necessitates far more expenses than other MPs. Regards, Eric Joyce If you look at the structure of you letter, you begin by saying that my position on the list is not relevant then conclude by telling me that that's the key variable. In between, it's just a hate-filled rant. Do get in touch in you need my services, but I think this correspondence (you'll give me no credit for being prompt, and for most constituents that can be life affecting) has reached it's limit of intelligent exploitation. Best wishes eric Unbelievable! And we pay these cunts Link to post Share on other sites More sharing options...
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