MP's 'exaggeration' of 700 mileage claims

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Tory MP Bob Blackman has hit the headlines this week after the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) ordered him to repay more than £1,000 which they say has been overclaimed since January 2013.
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The Intendant reported that Mr Blackman submitted a mileage claim for a 54-mile round trip by car between his west London constituency and Tottenham Hotspur training ground when the actual distance measured on Google Maps was 33 miles.

The compliance officer, Peter Davis, opened a formal investigation after Mr Blackman had been warned twice about his mileage claims. Ipsa warned him in October 2011 that his claims were six times higher than that of other London MPs. In December 2012, he was told that he appeared to have claimed for twice the distance that Google Maps would suggest that he had actually travelled, and “in some cases significantly more". But an audit in 2013-14 showed that he had again racked up the highest mileage claims of any MP, proportionate to the size of his constituency.

Mr Blackman, who has 15 days to appeal, denied the allegations and called on Mr Davis to “withdraw your unwarranted allegations". He added: “This is draconian and, more importantly, has no basis."

Evidence

British MP's haven't got the cleanest record when it comes to expenses. Claims for pond cleaning, roof repairs and pay-per-view porn are still fresh in the public's memory. With all of the false claims being paid for using the tax payer's hard earned cash, would it really be that far out of line for Joe Public to demand greater control and transparency about what MP's are actually claiming?

In fairness to Mr Blackman, just because Google maps says that a trip from his office to the Spurs training ground should be a 33 mile round trip, it doesn't relate to the actual route taken on the day due to road works, traffic or simply reflect what is the fastest route. However, one could only be sure that the claim is accurate by totalling the distance of all private and business mileage and comparing this to the odometer reading of Mr Blackman's car.

ABAX Triplog allows for 100% accurate mileage claims with no invasive tracking technology. Claims can be compiled quickly and easily and all business mileage can be verified. Read more here.

/Chris Miller

Mileage Claims