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Members: Allowances

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 3 February 2009

To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission pursuant to the answer of 27 January 2009, Official Report, columns 542-43W, on Members: allowances, (1) what timetable was given to the contractor brought in to assist with the process of publishing the details of hon. Members’ expenses; and whether there are penalties in the contract for any delays that occur; (254039)

(2) when the process of scanning and redacting receipts for hon. Members’ expenses will be completed and passed to hon. Members for checking.

The process of scanning and redacting claims, receipts etc has been undertaken in two stages. The first stage included the scanning of all relevant documentation and the initial editing and was concluded in October 2008 within agreed deadlines. The second stage has involved further editing to take account of privacy and security concerns apparent on completion of stage 1. This work is currently in hand and will be completed in March within agreed time frames. There have been no delays in the fulfilment of the contract. On completion of the scanning and editing work, hon. Members will need to check the records relating to them, and further editing may then be required. A date for sending out this information has not yet been set, but Members will receive advance notification of what they will need to do and how to raise matters of concern.