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Claims made by Mhari Black MP
CAS-18620
Disclosure Date:15 Jun 2015
Categories: GENERAL EXPENSES ENQUIRY
Exemptions Applied: Section 22
Request

Please provide me with a complete list of expenses for Mhairi Black, SNP MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South, since she was elected into office during the General Election.

I would also like full, or any, details of her second home in London, with regards to its location, monthly rent, value of the property, and council tax band.

Response

IPSA publishes all claims made by MPs for business costs and expenses on a dedicated publication website. You can access the publication website via the following link: http://www.parliamentary-standards.org.uk/

Claims are published in two-month tranches, three months after they have been processed and validated. The next publication date is 9 July 2015, which will cover those claims processed by IPSA during February and March 2015. The publication schedule can be found at the following address: http://www.parliamentary-standards.org.uk/files/Publication_dates.pdf.

Section 22(1) of the FOIA states that information intended for future publication is also exempt from release. We have considered whether the public interest in releasing the information outweighs the application of the exemption. It is our opinion that the public interest is best served by publishing a full list rather than on an ad hoc basis, as in this way a clear and complete set of information is published, avoiding any potential confusion. It is for this reason that the application of the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosure at this stage.

With regards your second request, the MPs’ Scheme of Business Costs and Expenses (‘the Scheme’) does not provide for a ‘second home’. MPs may only claim for Accommodation Expenditure in relation to a property at one location, in order to support their parliamentary functions which require that they work in two locations (Westminster and the constituency). Accommodation Expenditure for accommodation in London may only be claimed for hotels or rental payments (and associated expenditure) for a rented property.

Ms Black has not claimed the costs of rental payments and we do not therefore hold the information you have requested.

For reference, we will be publishing details of all MPs’ rental arrangements (including the location and landlord) on an annual basis, starting this September.