MPs' claims for the TV licence fee

Request

Please can you provide the following FOI relating to MPs in England -

  1. Is it correct there are currently 650 MP's in England?

  2. Is it true MP's are claiming for their TV Licence payments each year through their expenses?

  3. How many of these MP's claimed in the expenses for TV licence payment in 2016/17  & 2017/18?

  4. What was the total paid out in expenses for TV Licences for these MPs'  in 2016/17  & 2017/18?

The FOI is much appreciated. as heard on TV, MPs' in England are claiming for their TV licences payments each year through their Expenses.

Once this FOI is provided can l share this with Public on media websites?


Response

I will take each request in turn. 

  1. Is it correct there are currently 650 MP's in England?

 This information is exempt under section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) as it is already available to you by other means. You can find the information by visiting:

 https://www.parliament.uk/about/how/elections-and-voting/constituencies/ 

  1. Is it true MP's are claiming for their TV Licence payments each year through their expenses? 

Members of Parliament are permitted, under the MPs’ Scheme of Business Costs and Expenses (‘the Scheme’), to claim for expenses legitimately incurred whilst carrying out their parliamentary duties and are required to certify that this is the case before submitting claims. This includes the cost of a television licence, which can be claimed for the location at which they work, under office costs expenditure.

 3. How many of these MP's claimed in the expenses for TV licence payment in 2016/17  & 2017/18? 

IPSA holds the information that you have requested. The information is exempt under Section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), because the information is accessible to you, as it is already in the public domain. 

The information is available on our website

  • At the top of the page, select the financial year you are interested in, and then select ‘individual claims’. Click on Download.

  • When you have downloaded the spreadsheet, you should apply filters by clicking on the ‘sort and filter button’

  • In column G ‘Expense Type’, apply the filter by ‘Television Licence Purchase’. 

  1. What was the total paid out in expenses for TV Licences for these MPs' in 2016/17 & 2017/18? 

IPSA holds the information that you have requested. The information is exempt under Section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), because the information is accessible to you, as it is already in the public domain. 

  • Follow the steps at question 3 above.

  • The information is available in column Q ‘Amount Paid’ 

In relation to your query about whether you may share or disclose this information, FOI responses are considered to be disclosures into the public domain.

 This concludes our response to your request

Ref:
CAS-130411
Disclosure:
January 10, 2019
Categories:
GENERAL EXPENSES ENQUIRYMPs' OFFICE COSTS
Exemptions Applied:
Section 21