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MPs Are Being More Careful With Their Expenses

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Annette King
Annette King

Feds pse q for 0400

Wellington, Feb 26 NZPA - Parliament's decision to publish details of MPs' travel expenses has made them more careful about the way they spend taxpayer money.

The total claimed for the last three months of last year was $1,790,956 compared with the previous quarter's $2,050,020.

Yesterday's release was the third that has been made, and Labour's deputy leader Annette King acknowledged that public scrutiny had prompted a change in behaviour.

"There will always be ups and downs in expenses because there are times of the year when MPs travel more, or less, but obviously we are being careful with our expenses, looking very carefully at it," she said.

"The public expect us to and we have taken that on board."

The biggest bill was from Labour leader Phil Goff, who spent $89,455 in total with $69,657 for car travel as he covered the country selling his party's message.

Speaker Lockwood Smith was the biggest spending National MP, with a bill of $38,033, mostly made up of $22,698 in car travel.

Dr Smith racks up a big car bill travelling to his rural electorate and Auckland Airport.

Ministerial expenses within New Zealand were slightly up but international travel costs soared as Prime Minister John Key and others travelled around the world attending conferences and making official visits to other countries.

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