Claims for subsistence costs for MPs and Peers

Request

I would like to know details about subsistence claims of members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords.

Specifically, my request is for the value and claimant of each of the top ten highest food and general subsistence claims in both houses in the past year.


Response

IPSA holds some of the information that you request.

IPSA publishes details of expenses claims throughout the year in a two month cycle, three months in arrears. Expenses claims for October and November 2011 were published on our website on 1 March 2012. Expenses claims for December 2011 and January 2012 will be published on Thursday 10 May 2012. Annual data for the financial year 2011/2012 will be published following the end of the current financial year.  This can be viewed by visiting the following link to our website.

This information can be easily exported into an Excel document for offline viewing, giving you access to the information you requested.

The FOIA states that information that is accessible by other means or that is intended for future publication is not subject to release. Therefore, as the information you have requested (relating to the second part of your request) is either already available on our website or will shortly be published on our website, it is exempt from disclosure under section 21 of the FOIA (information accessible to applicant by other means) and under Section 22(1) of the FOIA (Information intended for future publication).

In reaching this conclusion, as required by the FOIA, 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 the information at set dates, rather than on an ad hoc basis, as this way a clear and complete set of information is published, which should also avoid causing confusion. It is for these stated reasons that the application of the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosure.

IPSA is not the responsible authority for making payments to Peers.  For Freedom of Information requests relating to this, you may wish to contact the House of Lords FOI team at the following email address: foilords@parliament.uk.

Ref:
FOI2012-A028
Disclosure:
April 24, 2012
Categories:
GENERAL EXPENSES ENQUIRY
Exemptions Applied:
Section 21